STATEMENT FROM NOBLE LOCAL SCHOOL SUPERINTENDENT JUSTIN DENIUS AND BOARD PRESIDENT ED McKEE
Many in the community already know that a former part-time Assistant Wrestling Coach for our
high school team was recently charged with having an illegal sexual relationship with an 18 year
old student on the team. When we first heard these allegations, we were sickened by them. An
adult intentionally and criminally preying on a student is evil. Every student who attends our
schools has an absolute right to be safe and secure from such criminal acts. There’s nothing
more important to us than the safety and well-being of the children and teenagers entrusted to
us by their parents.
Because we do not want to interfere with the ability of law enforcement to bring justice in this
very serious matter, we are limited in what we can say. But there are some things we want our
students, parents, faculty, staff, and residents to know.
- We placed this man on administrative leave without pay. We also reported him to the
Ohio Department of Education, which has the power to remove any professional
education credentials from him.
- This man’s contract as Assistant Wrestling Coach automatically ends at the end of this
wrestling season, and he will not be back as an employee or volunteer or in any position
in our District.
- We are fully cooperating with law enforcement, prosecutors, child welfare authorities,
and the Department of Education and will work with all of them to ensure that justice is
- While the man arrested passed a required criminal background check before being hired
as a part- time Assistant Wrestling Coach, we want to do even more to inquire into the
background of potential employees. We’re working to identify even more safeguards to
protect students because we can always do better.
- While law enforcement is handling the criminal law aspects of this matter, we still want
to know if any of our faculty or staff knew about these allegations. We require teachers
and coaches to immediately report any allegations of child sex abuse or any illegal
- We have an outside law firm with no conflicts or ties in our community to do a
personnel investigation to see if anyone violated our strict policy that teachers and
coaches must report sexual abuse of a student or other illegal activity. We will take
prompt and responsible action against anyone found to be in violation of our policies or
- We want to provide any counseling assistance to the student whom law enforcement
has identified as the victim in this matter, and we’ve told the student’s family about this
offer. We want to see healing and support for any student who’s been victimized. Also,
our guidance counselors have a range of counseling and support options for any other
student who is upset or experiencing emotional difficulties because of this situation.
We ask the community to stand with school leaders as we seek to hold accountable anyone
who broke the law and as we work to do all we can to keep our students safe. We call on
anyone who has any information that could help see justice done to contact the Noble County