Court documents in the felony student sex case involving former North Lenoir High School baseball coach Donell Garris show the alleged physical relationship between Garris and the female student began sometime in June.

According to the statement by Lenoir County Sheriff’s Office Detective Ronald Farris, he and Sgt. Christy Smith arrived at NLHS Monday and talked with Principal Gil Respess.

“Mr. Respess stated that one of his custodians had seen Coach Garris and (the student) coming out of the press box at the baseball field,” the statement detailed. “Myself and Sgt. Smith went to the press box and inside the trash cans we found (five) used condoms and one condom wrapper. Those items were collected as evidence.

“(Tuesday), myself and Detective Chris Heath went to North Lenoir High School and interviewed Coach Garris. During the interview Coach Garris admitted to have a sexual relationship with (the student). He stated that he has had sex with her about (six) or (seven) times and that it all started in June of this year.”

Farris’ search warrant affidavit noted the custodian told Respess of seeing Garris and the student leaving the press box July 7. The search warrant was taken out and executed to obtain information off Garris’ iPhone 6.

According to the affidavit, “Coach Garris also stated that he and (the student) communicated via text message. Sgt. Smith interviewed (the student). Sgt. Smith stated that (the student) told her she had sent pictures to Coach Garris of her in her underwear. Sgt. Smith also stated (the student) told (her) she had sent nude pictures of herself to Coach Garris. Sgt. Smith stated that (the student) told her that Coach Garris had sent nude pictures of himself to her.”

Items and information subject to seizure from the phone included text messages, multimedia messages, recorded messages and any SIM cards, along with address books, calendars, call histories, audio and video clips, photographs and associated metadata and information related directly to the criminal activity report derived from data that would identify the owner or the user of the phone.

Garris is next scheduled to appear July 27 in Lenoir County District Court.

 

Wes Wolfe can be reached at 252-559-1075 and Wes.Wolfe@Kinston.com. Follow him on Twitter @WesWolfeKFP.