Melrose coach arrested, another under investigation

MELROSE, N.M. (KRQE) – Two high school coaches in one New Mexico village are under investigation for allegedly having inappropriate relationships with students.

KRQE News 13 learned one of the coaches has been charged with raping a student while the other is accused of texting a student at odd hours.

The news is rocking the small village of Melrose where it happened.

“I want to protect our school, and obviously you can’t always do that,” said Melrose School Superintendent Jamie Widner.

The Curry County Sheriff’s Office says they received reports last week saying two former coaches had unlawful interaction with students.

Sources said one of the suspects is a man, 35, who coached Melrose High School boys.

The district said the coach sent numerous text messages to an underage girl. Investigators won’t reveal what the messages said, but the superintendent said the timing of the texts is what seems suspicious.

“That means at odd hours of the day,” said Widner. “There were several text messages and conversations.”

This isn’t the first time the coach has come under question.

The school board president told the superintendent about similar behavior in April 2013.

“There were accusations and rumors about this earlier, all the way back to last spring, but there wasn’t any clean cut proof,” said Widner.

After that incident, the coach was given a special counseling session.

The superintendent said he couldn’t fire him based on rumors.

“There was never anything covered up,” Widner said. “It was always out in the open about what I did and what I try to do.”

The Curry County Sheriff’s Office told News 13 the other coach is Allison Draper, 28.

She’s charged with rape and molesting a minor. The district says both coaches were contracted out and didn’t teach at the school.

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