A former high school librarian and coach charged in Labette County District Court with two counts of aggravated endangering a child, both lower level felonies, is seeking diversion.
Attorney Robert Myers, on behalf of his client, Lori K. Green of Altamont, presented the diversion application to Labette County Deputy Attorney Mandy Johnson during Green’s court hearing Monday.
Johnson said she would review the application and see if Green is eligible for diversion. Johnson told District Judge Fred W. Johnson it would take three weeks to 30 days for the state to conclude the review.
Diversion is an option for many nonviolent crimes, though some lower level felony offenses may be eligible for the program.
To qualify for diversion, the applicant generally admits to some wrongdoing and the case is removed from the docket while the applicant participates in a program similar to probation. Requirements vary but can include restitution to a victim or victims, paying a diversion and supervision fee, attending some type of program and community service. Once the applicant has completed the program, the prosecutor will petition to dismiss the charge or charges. So the person’s criminal record will not show a conviction.
Green was charged last year after an investigation into an incident at Labette County High School. According to the probable cause affidavit filed in the case, the incident involving two students as alleged victims occurred on May 14, 2019.
Labette County sheriff’s detectives first interviewed two students June 4. One said that on May 14 he and Eddie Green, Lori Green’s husband who also oversees building trades at LCHS, returned to school after picking up items at a job site. They parked in the alley on the north side of the building. Lori Green pulled up beside them. The student walked into the building through a roll-up garage door to work on a project per instructions from Mr. Green. The student saw Mrs. Green “jumping” her vehicle, a Lincoln Navigator. The student explained that this means she was pushing the gas pedal and applying brakes to cause the vehicle to jump forward. The student was inside the building, just inside a roll-up door, talking to another student when Mrs. Green’s Navigator hit the garage door.
The students left the building trades shop and walked to the woodworking shop. They told the detective that they heard more yelling from the building trades shop and one student reported hearing what sounded like boards and tools being thrown around inside the shop.
The sheriff’s department was asked to investigate the case on May 31. This was 17 days after the incident and two weeks after Mrs. Green’s first closed-door meeting with USD 506 school board members.
The Labette County USD 506 Board of Education accepted Green’s written letter of retirement on May 22. The decision to accept the letter, on a 5-1 vote, followed several closed sessions with the coach and board members. The board had also met with Green in closed session on May 17, three days after the incident.
A sheriff’s detective also retrieved photos of damage in the shop that Superintendent John Wyrick took with his phone.
Lori Green told a detective on June 18 that the incident at school was an extension of an earlier argument. When asked about hitting the door with the vehicle, Mrs. Green said she didn’t mean to. Vail asked her about a report that she yelled at her husband that she was going to drive the vehicle through the building. She said that to get his attention and that she would not have done it, Mrs. Green told the detective.
The diversion application will be reviewed on Feb. 6.