East Ridge High School Football Coach Tracy Malone has resigned
UPDATE: Former East Ridge High School teacher and football coach Tracy Malone issued a statement to NewsChannel 9 on Wednesday evening. In his statement, Malone says he was in the weight room when an incident occurred on Tuesday morning. But, he says, he was at his desk and was not giving his undivided attention to the students.
Here is his statement in it's entirety:
"I would like to begin by thanking my family, friends, and fans for their support. My resignation as a teacher and football coach at East Ridge High School was not an easy decision for me. The purpose of this statement is to correct some incorrect rumors and reports and to defend my reputation. It has been widely reported that when the altercation between two students occurred on Monday, February 1 I was not in the East Ridge HS weight room where I was supposed to be. That is entirely untrue. I was in the room the entire class period as was another ERHS physical education teacher for a majority of the class period. I did not know that an incident had occurred, did not see it occur, did not hear it occur and was not informed that anything had occurred until 8:30am Tuesday morning. At that time, I was informed that an altercation between two students had occurred. I acknowledge that I was in the room, at my desk working on my computer and not giving my undivided attention to the students and that was a mistake I will have to live with for the rest of my life, however to report that I was out of the room and the class was totally unsupervised is completely false. I made the decision to resign at a meeting with ERHS principal Tammy Helton and HCDE human resources director Ava Warren on Tuesday afternoon. I was not forced to resign, I simply felt that it was the right thing to do for myself and for East Ridge HS. The Hamilton County sheriff's department investigated the incident and found no charges would be filed against me. I have done nothing illegal in this situation. I cannot control what people will think of me or say about me but it is important to me and my family that I defend my reputation from incorrect statements being made about me and the job I have done for the last four years at East Ridge HS and during my 18 year teaching / coaching career. As a teacher and a parent, I hold myself and all teachers to a higher standard and I did not meet that standard during this incident. I ask that my family and I be given privacy during this difficult time and would appreciate your thoughts and prayers. Lastly, to my Pioneer football players, I am sorry I was not given the opportunity to speak to you in person about my resignation. I will never forget my time in East Ridge and have nothing but special memories. I wish nothing but the best to East Ridge High School in 2016"
UPDATE: Matt Lea, with Hamilton County Sheriff's Office, says the SRO at East Ridge High School said the incident happened yesterday in the weight room.
The SRO says two students were horse playing and it escalated.
Matt says after investigating, the SRO determined the incident did not warrant any charges.
Here is the incident report from the Hamilton County Sheriff's Department. The names of students have been redacted.
East Ridge High School Head Football Coach Tracy Malone has resigned suddenly.
NewsChannel 9 learned this afternoon that students allegedly assaulted another student while Coach Malone was supposed to be in his classroom but wasn't.
According to Stacy Stewart, Hamilton County's Assistant Superintendent for Human Resources, the district is aware of the incident and met with Malone prior to his resignation.
NewsChannel 9 attempted to reach Malone, but we've been unsuccessful so far.
We're continuing to follow this story and will bring you updates as we get them.