ESTILL COUNTY, Ky. (LEX 18) — Estill County School officials issued a statement Wednesday afternoon reacting to the arrest of the high school’s soccer coach on a variety of charges related to student-athletes, including rape.
Andrew Hatton was put on leave Monday as Kentucky State Police and school officials investigated, according to the Estill County Schools Superintendent Jeff Saylor.
Hatton was arrested Tuesday and charged with five counts of third-degree rape, two counts of prohibited use of electronic communication system to procure a minor, two counts of possession/viewing matter portraying sexual performance by a minor, and three counts of distribution of obscene matter to minors.
The complete statement from Estill County Schools follows:
The entire Estill County School Community is saddened by the recent events surrounding our Engineer Soccer Program. Within minutes of school officials receiving allegations of inappropriate actions by Coach Andrew Hatton, local law enforcement was notified. Since that time we have worked hand in hand with the Kentucky State Police in order to complete a thorough investigation into this matter. As reported earlier this week, Mr. Hatton was placed on leave while an internal investigation was conducted. I want to assure the students, parents and community that we have followed all policies and procedures as established by the Estill County Board of Education and Kentucky Revised Statutes. Based on the information we have gathered, Mr. Hatton’s employment with the Estill County School System has been terminated effective immediately. We are now in the process of implementing a plan to address the needs of our students and their parents. All of our players are experiencing a difficult time trying to deal with feelings and emotions that have been brought about by this situation. The district will continue to provide support to these students and families for as long as needed. My commitment to this community is that we will always put student safety first in everything we do. Since this is still an open investigation, I cannot comment on specifics of this case. However, if anyone has firsthand knowledge concerning this issue, please contact this office at (606) 723-2181 or the Kentucky State Police, Post 7 at (859) 623-2404. Finally, this school district has over 350 employees who are dedicated to the lives of the children they teach and coach every day. Our motto this year has been TEAM: Together Everyone Achieves More. Together we will move forward to do what is best for our students each and every day. Sincerely, Jeff Saylor, Superintendent Estill County Schools