• September 22, 2019

Settlement may be on horizon in Voss case - Odessa American: News

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Settlement may be on horizon in Voss case

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Posted: Friday, July 26, 2019 4:14 pm

An Ector County ISD Board of Trustees closed session on the proposed non-renewal of a contract for former longtime principal Linda Voss was canceled to allow the parties to explore a possible settlement, Mike Atkins, the attorney for the school district, said in an email.

Her attorney representing her on the education side is Nick Enoch. He could not be reached for comment Friday.

Charged with a Class A misdemeanor of failure to report in violation of a section under the Texas Family Code, Voss was booked into the Ector County Detention Center Feb. 26 and released that day on a $1,000 surety bond. A Class A misdemeanor is punishable by up to a year in the county jail and up to a $4,000 fine, or both.

According to an affidavit, Voss was required to report the alleged indecency with a child allegation to Texas Child Protective Services or law enforcement within 48 hours. The affidavit said Voss failed to report the case during that time after she became aware of the allegations.

Indecency with a child occurs when someone engages in sexual contact with a child or causes the child to engage in sexual contact with the intent to arouse or gratify the sexual desire of any person, Voss’ attorney John Green said in a previous article.

Voss said the incident did not involve an adult. “It involved four students and they’re minors (age 10 and 11). Under our training and our policy when it is a student-to-student situation, we as principals are responsible for investigating the situation because up until then it could be hearsay,” she said in April.

“We have seven to 10 days to investigate. If at the end of the investigation we find, or we suspect, abuse has been committed, or neglect, then it is our responsibility to call the appropriate agencies.

“For us, (we) call district police, who would in turn involve (Texas) Child Protective Services after their investigation,” Voss said previously. She said she followed district policy and training.

According to the policy, any district employee who suspects or receives notice that a student or group of students has or may have experienced prohibited conduct shall immediately notify the appropriate district official. In this instance, Voss notified ECISD’s Title IX coordinator, she said.

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