The five Midland Christian employees who were accused of failing to report a sexual assault were no billed by a grand jury Wednesday, according to relatives of those involved in the case.

This means the grand jury did not think there was enough evidence to take the case to trial at this time, but they could be indicted later.

Barry Russell, Gregory McClendon, Matthew Counts, Jared Lee and Dana Ellis were all charged with Failure To Report With Intent To Conceal Neglect Or Abuse back in February.

The assault reportedly involved a sexual assault of a student by members of the baseball team at Christensen Stadium in January 2022.

Since the five were accused, Greg McClendon resigned as Athletic Director and head football coach. The school has not released information on resignation or firing of any of the other employees.

The school also appointed Kelly Moore as interim superintendent and Jerry Burleson as interim head baseball coach. Tim Anuszkiewicz, former defensive coordinator for Midland High School, took over as interim head football coach.

All five who were arrested were given a personal recognizance bond and were released around 24 hours after being detained.

According to the attorney for Jared Lee, the Midland Police Department submitted its report to the District Attorney's office around April 7.

In response to the Grand Jury's No-Bill decision, Midland Christian has released a statement sharing their thoughts about the decision:

"Midland Christian School was grateful yesterday to learn that the Midland County Grand Jury declined to indict the five administrative members of our staff. We are pleased that the grand jury confirmed what we believed to be true after receiving results of our own external and independent investigation into the legal matter.

"Our independent external investigator concluded the five individuals acted reasonably and appropriately given the facts and circumstances, so we are not surprised the grand jury reached the same conclusion. We recognize that grand jury service is one of the most demanding forms of community service. We want to express our appreciation to those men and women whose courage and pursuit of truth led them to this conclusion. 

"We are proud of the five members of our Midland Christian School family and grateful these legal proceedings are behind them. They have each handled themselves gracefully in the face of these extremely difficult circumstances, all while holding firm to their faith. 

"Our current administrative staff who have boldly stepped into interim roles will continue to lead our students and faculty through the remainder of the school year to help avoid yet another disruptive change to our campus life. Our colleagues will remain on paid administrative leave through the end of the 2021-2022 school year. Midland Christian School remains committed to our mission and the pursuit of excellence across everything we do. As we move forward as a school, we will continue to closely evaluate ways to further strengthen this pursuit. 

"Our faculty, staff, and students have been instrumental in our ability to press forward these last three months. We applaud their strength and determination and look forward to celebrating their accomplishments, especially our graduates, over these next nine days to finish out the year."

Midland County District Attorney Laura Nodolf released a statement Friday regarding the grand jury decision to no-bill five Midland Christian School employees:

“The law does not permit the attorney representing the state, or any witness, to discuss the matters presented or discussed during the Grand Jury proceedings. Therefore, the Midland County District Attorney’s Office cannot legally comment on anything that occurred during the presentation of the case involving the administration/coaches from Midland Christian School.

"In Midland County, a particular Grand Jury may be presented with twenty to sixty cases at a time. Texas law permits the attorney representing the state (a prosecutor) to appear before the Grand Jury. When presenting the case, the prosecutor has a duty to present all of the facts, evidence, and any exculpatory information regarding a case. While a detective may be called as a witness in a case, it is not common practice unless there appears that there is a particular need for their testimony. However, even if a prosecutor does not call a witness to testify, the Grand Jury can still ask that a summons be issued for a witness, including a detective, to appear and answer any questions that the grand jury may have.

"If this happens, then the Midland County District Attorney’s Office does everything it can to ensure that the grand jury has to have all of the facts and evidence they need in order for them to deliberate and vote on a case.“

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