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Questions mount about Jessie Haynes' assault leave from BISD - 12 News KBMT and K-JAC. News, Weather and Sports for SE Texas

Questions mount about Jessie Haynes' assault leave from BISD

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BEAUMONT -

Beaumont Independent School District communications director Jessie Haynes turned herself in to authorities back in October. She had been charged with obstruction of a passageway, accused of blocking a board trustee and a reporter from entering a news conference.

The confrontation happened on August 1, and although Haynes is the only one charged in the incident, she is the one claiming to be an assault victim.

Haynes has been on BISD's assault leave since August 5.

The confrontation was captured on video. It shows Haynes blocking Trustee Mike Neil from entering a room where BISD attorney Melody Chappell was speaking to reporters.

Neil filed a complaint against Haynes and the Jefferson County District Attorney's office charged her with the Class B misdemeanor. A trial date has been set for February 24, and although she's not been at work for four months, BISD's assault leave policy allows her to collect workers' compensation along with assault leave benefits that combined total her weekly rate of pay.

Haynes' annual salary is $103,200.

Despite her claims of assault, and actually being on assault leave, Haynes has yet to take any formal action against Neil.

The BISD police department did take a report of the incident to Beaumont's municipal court, but sources within the BISD tell us Haynes has failed to follow through. She is required to go to municipal court and formally sign the complaint she alleges against Neil.

According to court officials, that has not happened.

Our sources within the district have also told us Haynes has not presented any proof of injuries or doctor's documentation to make her case. However 12News found an online petition in which Haynes supporters are asking for Neil to be charged with aggravated assault.

In response Neil said, "The online petition and Haynes' assault leave are typical of the lying, cheating and stealing that's coming out of BISD's executive office."

If an investigation reveals an assault did not take palace, the district could pursue reimbursement from the employee. That could be in the form of repayment of salary or vacation or sick time.

We attempted to contact Haynes for this story, but our calls were not returned. We also contacted BISD to inquire on the investigation the district was doing on Haynes' allegations.

BISD has hired the law firm of Walsh Anderson to look into the matter.

A district spokesperson told us they could not comment, because it's a personnel issue.

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