Former Pyote TYC Principal Found Not Guilty on Sex Abuse Charges

Staff Report
The Associated Press

LUBBOCK, Texas (AP) - The second criminal trial out of a sex abuse scandal at a West Texas juvenile prison that upended the agency overseeing young offenders has ended in an acquittal for the facility's former principal.

Jurors late Monday found John Paul Hernandez not guilty on 14 counts that alleged he sexually abused five inmates at in 2004 and 2005. Hernandez is a former principal of the now-shuttered West Texas State School in Pyote.

Hernandez had faced up to 20 years in prison.

Another former administrator, Ray Brookins, was sentenced last April to 10 years in prison for sexually abusing different young men at the prison.

The abuse allegations and subsequent investigations prompted the resignations or firings of several top state officials responsible for overseeing the state's juvenile prison system.