After three years of waiting for a disposition in his improper relationship case, former Permian teacher Robert K. Young has been charged with two additional felonies.
With his case set to go to trial next week, the Ector County District Attorney’s Office re-indicted Young, 44, on two more counts of improper relationship between educator and student.
The initial indictment filed in September 2010 accused Young of engaging in sexual contact with a student at Permian High School.
The new indictment, in addition to that original count, also accuses him of using the Internet and text messages to solicit a meeting to “engage in sexual contact or sexual intercourse or deviate sexual intercourse,” and using those same methods to communicate with and distribute sexually explicit material.
Ector County District Attorney Bobby Bland said he reviewed the case after former prosecutor Teresia Depoyster abruptly quit the day before Young’s trial was set to go on Oct. 8.
“As a part of our review of the file, I determined there were actions that we did not initially plea that should have been pled in the indictment,” Bland said. “When I looked at the facts of the case and personally reviewed all aspects of the case, I felt the indictment was lacking.”
Bland said he’s already discussed the changes with the reported victim, the witnesses in the case, and the defense attorney for Young, Rick Navarrete out of Midland.
Navarrete did not return a call seeking comment.
When asked why it took three years to change the indictment, Bland said a couple of attorneys have handled the case in that time, but it’s ultimately his responsibility as district attorney to make sure the charge is correct.
When he reviewed the case, Bland said there were alternate ways of doing things.
“It just did not take advantage of all the charges that could have been made,” Bland said.
The indictment was handed down by the grand jury for Judge Bill McCoy’s 358th District Court, although Young is still charged in Judge James Rush’s 244th District Court.
Bland said it’s too early to say what will happen to the duplicate charge in the 244th District Court, and he would not say anything further regarding that charge.
However, he did respond to the three years this case has taken, and guaranteed it wouldn’t take another three years.
“Some cases take longer than other for various reasons, and this is one of those cases,” Bland said. “I do regret that it has taken this long. Every case is unique and the main thing is when it gets resolved, it gets resolved properly.”
However, Bland said he would not discuss whether the case violated speedy trial laws because he said the reporter does not fully grasp the scope of the legal term “speedy trial.”
According to previous stories, Young has been accused of starting a relationship with an 18-year-old Permian student on May 15, 2010, shortly before she was set to graduate.
The girl was not a student in any of Young’s classes, according to previous stories.
Young was placed on administrative leave June 21, 2010, amid the investigation. A probable cause affidavit filed in 2010 stated Young would pick up the girl in his truck about three times a week and drive around from 10 p.m. to 3 a.m., kissing and engaging in heavy petting.
He was arrested June 29, and his contract was terminated July 20, 2010. He began teaching in Ector County in 1992, and had been a Pre-AP Algebra II and AP Calculus teacher at Permian.
After being released from the Midland County Detention Center on a $20,000 bond, Young has had a number of hearings in Ector County during the past three years.
At least two recent hearings were set for Young to plead guilty in the case, although no plea deal has been reached.