Texas

‘Shame on you’ for Art Briles hire, says Fort Worth dad of woman who was raped, murdered

Molly Jane Matheson’s dad is mad.

Still coping with the rape and murder of his 22-year-old daughter, David Matheson can’t believe that Art Briles — the former Baylor football coach fired during a sexual assault scandal at the university in 2016 — has been hired to coach high school football in Mount Vernon.

“I am the father of a college girl who was raped and murdered in 2017,” David Matheson wrote in an email Sunday to Mount Vernon school superintendent Jason McCullough. “I find it beyond comprehension that you would hire a person who was so complicit in the institutional allowance of the sexual assault of so many young women.

“What a message you are sending to students in your district.”

Briles was fired from Baylor after some of his football players were accused of sexual assault in a rape scandal that rocked the Baptist university.

As for Molly Jane Matheson, she was found dead in the bathroom of her TCU-area apartment in 2017.

Reginald Gerard Kimbro, a 25-year-old who once dated her, remains in the Tarrant County Jail accused in Molly Jane’s rape and murder.

Police determined that Kimbro had visited Matheson’s home the night before her body was found. He admitted he visited Matheson, but said she was alive when he left.

Kimbro also has been indicted in the capital murder of Megan Leigh Getrum, a 36-year-old Plano woman. And he has been linked to other cases, including the choking and raping of a 20-year-old woman in South Padre Island in 2014.

Texas lawmakers this year passed, and have sent to Gov. Greg Abbott for consideration, “Molly Jane’s Law,” which is geared to help law enforcers better track sexual assaults and prevent Texans from dying at the hands of serial offenders.

David Matheson wrote in his email, shared with the Star-Telegram, that Kimbro hasn’t been “held accountable” for sexual assaults he committed before killing Molly Jane.

“Coach Briles knew about the sexual assaults that took place on his watch. Coach Briles actively engaged in trying to cover up those sexual assaults,” he wrote. “Coach Briles turned a blind eye to the victims’ screams for help. And this is the guy you are going to put in charge of influencing young men? Shame on you and your school board.

“Surely winning can’t be this important to you?”

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Anna M. Tinsley grew up in a journalism family and has been a reporter for the Star-Telegram since 2001. She has covered the Texas Legislature and politics for more than two decades and has won multiple awards for political reporting, most recently a third place from APME for deadline writing. She is a Baylor University graduate.
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