North Syracuse (WSYR-TV) -- The North Syracuse Central School District girls varsity softball coach has been fired after one of his players was allegedly targeted by bullies.
Kerry Bennett has been the girls softball coach for 30 years and he says the school board’s decision was based on absolute lies.
Coach Bennett says the decision stems from allegations that a student was bullied after she missed a big game so she could go to the senior ball.
The student-athlete, Brittany Paul and her father Jeffrey, demanded action from the school board on July 9, claiming she was tormented by adults and fellow athletes after she missed the state championship game.
Brittany and her father say she was harassed in person, through text messages and on social media sites by a number of people. They also claim an anonymous letter, critical of Brittany, was sent to her future college coach.
Brittany’s car was also allegedly vandalized twice. The first time it was scratched with a key and the second time it was apparently covered with food.
"Do you comprehend the humiliation of being at a friend's house or having to drive that car to a public wash. That took two car washes, three-and-a-half hours on my part to get that car clean," said Jeffrey Paul.
Coach Bennett says the whole story hasn’t come out yet. He’s been coaching for three decades now, with hundreds of wins under his belt and four state titles. He says he plans to meet with his lawyer next week.
Brittany’s mother declined to comment and says she just wants to put this behind her.
"You can choose to do nothing," said Brittany Paul to the school board. "You can hope this was an isolated incident and this will never happen again. Ask yourself though, what is the variable being changed to ensure it doesn't happen again? We will be faced with the same people in the same positions with the same attitudes - what really changed? In many respects, the passive position of the board would send a resounding message that this behavior is both condoned and supported."
In a written statement to NewsChannel 9, C-NS superintendent Kim Dyce Faucette said, “This is a decision that was in the best interest of our program and our students. This is a personnel matter that we can not discuss in detail.”