Dallas ISD coach arrested for sexual assault of student

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by JASON WHITELY

WFAA

Posted on February 22, 2013 at 10:55 AM

DALLAS - School district police charged a DISD coach at Molina High School with sexually assaulting and having an improper relationship with a 17-year-old female student.

The felony allegations against Philon Deberry, 43, of Fort Worth, are outlined in arrest affidavits filed in the 282nd District Court.

According to the documents obtained by The Dallas Morning News, Deberry had been harassing the victim by hugging and kissing her since early 2012.

Just before winter break last December, the arrest affidavit said Deberry lured the teenage victim to a locker room at Molina High.

"He ushered her into the room, followed her in, locked the door behind him and started unbuttoning his shorts," the affidavit read. "She was scared and attempted to flee but he grabbed her by her hair. She yelled and nobody came."

The affidavit went on to say that Deberry forced her to perform oral sex on him.

"She hit him and for a moment, he eased his grip and she was able to pull away," the affidavit read.

The investigation started last week about something else.The district got a tip Deberry was taking students off campus for physicals so they could participate in athletics.

While he was on leave, the student came forward.

"He told her that if she told anyone, they wouldn't believe her and it would be his word against hers," the affidavit read. "He would lose his wife and children and this made her feel guilty."

News 8 met Deberry in 2006 when he led the push to bring football back to UT-Arlington. But Deberry was ousted a year or so later for reportedly mismanaging the organization's funds, a claim he denied.

Dallas ISD said Deberry has coached at Molina the last four years.

As of Thursday night, he remained jailed in Dallas County, unable to post $200,000 bond.

Deberry's attorney, Danny Clancy, told News 8 he's on his way back to Dallas and plans to meet with his client for the first time on Friday.

In a letter home to Molina students on Thursday, Dallas ISD urged parents to talk to their children and have them immediately report any questionable contact they experience.

E-mail jwhitely@wfaa.com

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