Remaining charges dropped against former football coach

Mike ErwinJournal-Capital
Remaining charges dropped against former football coach

The last remaining embezzlement charges against Scotty Ray Gilkey were dismissed Friday, more than two years after allegations related to the charges prompted his removal as Pawhuska High School head football coach.

“It’s been a long time coming,” Gilkey said following his appearance in Osage County District Court.

Osage County Associate District Judge B. David Gambill announced the dismissal of misdemeanor charges accusing Gilkey and his wife, Jennifer, with embezzling several hundred dollars from the Pawhuska Public School District.

The seven-count misdemeanor had been filed in May 2013, along with a felony charge that claimed the ex-coach misappropriated approximately $2,500 from a fireworks stand operated for the benefit Pawhuska’s football program.

An Osage County jury found Gilkey innocent of the felony charge last September. Following a three-day trial at which testimony was given by 18 witnesses, the jurors deliberated for less than an hour before voting to acquit the 39-year-old former coach.

Gambill said the case against Scotty Gilkey were being dismissed “with prejudice,” meaning the state is prohibited from ever re-filing the charges against him. The charges were dismissed without prejudice in regard the Mrs. Gilkey, the judge stated.

Bonds in the amounts of $2,500 for Gilkey and $1,500 for his wife were exonerated and no court costs were assessed the former defendants.

Gilkey had been hired at Pawhuska, his prep alma mater, less than six months before he was suspended from his coaching duties in early November 2012 — just four days before the PHS football team was to compete in the first round of the state playoffs. (The Huskies lost their playoff game ­­ ­­ at Commerce, 48-15, to finish the season with a 4-7 record.)

Pawhuska school officials later asked the Osage Count Sheriff’s Office to conduct an investigation of school district finances, including certain allegations that were being made regarding football program funds. Several months after that investigation concluded, District Attorney Rex Duncan filed the charges against the Gilkeys.

Following his favorable jury verdict in the September trial, Gilkey said he felt that the allegations had been made against him by “a group of people with an agenda.”

“I can handle the fact that some people don’t like me, but it seems wrong when things are done out of malice that have affected so many people — and especially where the kids are involved,” Gilkey said.

He said he regrets that the ordeal has cost him two years that he can never have back.

“For me, the toughest part is not being able to coach my son,” Gilkey had stated last summer.

After playing for PHS as a freshman in the 2012 football season, Scotty Gilkey, Jr., transferred to Jenks as a sophomore and this season was a varsity quarterback at Broken Arrow High School.