Throughout the following quotes from various news media will be presented in Bold.
Commentary of the Editor of Bubbaworld will appear in Italic.
On 8/08/2000 the Tulsa World published a report titled "Coach questioned about video".
This initial print media report was the second news media report of the tale of Coach "Noonie", his camcorder and their exploits in the girls locker room at Skiatook High School, in Skiatook, Oklahoma.
Prior to this news report appearing in the Tulsa World, Tulsa television station KOTV on 7 August, 2000 had broadcast portions of tapes the station indicated were recorded inside the girls locker room at Skiatook High School. The station edited the tapes for broadcast so that the girls' faces and torsos could not be seen.
The referenced Tulsa World report went on to indicate:
A member of the Skiatook High School girls' basketball
team said she recognized the girls in the video, who were shown
changing into athletic practice uniforms, as fellow members of
the team. She said she recognized the man shown in the video
adjusting the camera's focus and wrapping the camera in a
shirt to conceal it as the then-assistant coach, Harry
"Noonie" Red Eagle.
The girl, who did not want to be identified in this story, said she did not see herself in the short segments that were aired on evening newscasts. She said the video was taken during the 1998-99 basketball season.
"We knew him real well -- trusted him," she said of Red Eagle.
"Noonie" Red Eagle served as assistant coach for girls basketball at Skiatook High School for the 1997 through 1999 school years. Previously Red Eagle had taught character education classes at the high school and at the time of the airing of the video tape segments by KOTV he was the school's driving instructor.
At the time of these initial reports, his father Harry Red Eagle was the Superintendent of Skiatook Schools.
In it's report revealing the hidden taping. KOTV did not reveal how it acquired the tapes. After copying the tapes, KOTV turned them over to the Tulsa County District Attorney's office which in turn turned them over to the Skiatook Police Department.
The initial Tulsa World report quoted Skiatook Police Chief, Dan Yancy, as follows:
There are many victims involved, and we've got to make
identities of these victims and find them and interview them.
We're still trying to ID some of them, and that's going to take some time. As soon as we locate them, then obviously we'll interview them.
Thus began the story of "Coach Noonie and His Hidden Camcorder". Before it was completely played out a year later, two Skiatook teachers would resign, two would be fired from their jobs and ultimately sue the Skiatook Schools, Harry Red Eagle Sr. would resign as Superintendent of Skiatook Schools and numerous teenaged girls would come to regret the day their paths crossed that of Coach Noonie.
Here, as they say, is the rest of the story which rocked a small Oklahoma town to it's very foundation, left numerous young girls with a sense of having been victimized by both Red Eagle Jr. as well as "the system" and demonstrates that all is not as it seems here on the Buckle of the Bible Belt:
The Full Story - Complete with commentary by the Editor of Bubbaworld
On the day following its initial report, the Tulsa World in a report titled, "Others likely knew of taping, police say" revealed that Skiatook Police suspected that other employees at Skiatook High School knew of Coach Noonie's clandestine taping in the girls locker room.
This same report revealed that Harry Red Eagle Jr. had submitted his resignation to the Skiatook School Board. The report went on to indicate that thus far Coach Noonie had not consented to speaking with the town's police regarding the alleged taping.
The report also contained the following bomb shell quoted here:
Investigators hoped to determine whether the taping was a
one-time incident or whether a camera had been hidden in the
locker room on other occasions.
So far, police know about only one tape, which appears to have been recorded during the 1998-99 basketball season, Yancey said. But investigators have not sought any search warrants for Red Eagle's residence, he said.
Three years ago, however, an eighth-grade girl reportedly noticed a red blinking light inside a changing- room locker. On closer examination she found a video recorder wrapped inside a sweat shirt, the girl's mother said Tuesday.
A friend of the girl's took the camera to Red Eagle, who promised to investigate, Cheron Randolph said.
"We thought it probably was some boys who snuck into the locker room," Randolph said. "And we never thought anything else about it, because we put our trust in this man."
Now a junior in high school, her daughter doesn't want to return to classes this fall.
"She's horrified and embarrassed, even though we don't know for sure that she was ever taped," Randolph said.
The report concluded by revealing that prior to his employment by the Skiatook School System that Harry Red Eagle Jr. had been employed by the Grove Public Schools, in Delaware County, Oklahoma. For those unfamiliar with the many oddities of life in Delaware County, Oklahoma you are invited to view Bubbaworld's Delaware County Oklahoma Special Coverage .
On 8/11/2000, the Tulsa World in a report titled, "Skiatook coach gives resignation" revealed that the Skiatook School Board had without discussion voted unanimously to accept the resignation of Harry (Noonie) Red Eagle Jr. The board refused to accept any comments from those in attendance in spite of one concerned parent, Stephanie Gruenwald, calling the school board to be added to the agenda to speak at the meeting. Following the sudden vote to accept Red Eagle Jr's. resignation the board adjourned the meeting immediately and left the meeting room.
Quoting from the referenced Tulsa World report:
"You've seen what happened," she said of the
The school board "is supposed to be our voice," Gruenwald said, but she accused the members of failing the parents.
Gruenwald was "appalled" when she saw the video tape, she said, "but I've been telling the school board for several years that things were going on that weren't quite right -- sexual things."
That same report went on to state:
The group also said they were angry that Harry Red Eagle Jr. hasn't apologized to the girls or their parents.
They're also angry at the elder Red Eagle's
televised comment that he was concerned for his son's career,
They were concerned about the girls' lives, they said, adding that "they didn't do anything wrong."
On 8/12/2000 a Tulsa World report titled "Skiatook police obtain third videotape in their investigation of former coach" revealed that additional tapes had been recovered by police in the course of their investigation.
On 8/17/2000, the Tulsa World in a report titled "Skiatook's 2nd coach resigns" provided additional insight into the scandal which was sweeping both the high school and the town of Skiatook, Oklahoma.
Quoting from that report:
Less than a week after the Skiatook school board accepted
the resignation of a girls' basketball coach, the board
accepted the resignation of a second coach on Wednesday
Without fanfare, the board voted unanimously to accept the resignation of David Douthit, who was the girls' softball and boys' soccer coach during the 1997-1998 school year.
Additionally the report went on to reveal:
For a short time in the past, Douthit reportedly was a
roommate of Red Eagle's.
According to police, at least three and probably four school officials knew about the tape. Police Chief Dan Yancey has said any actions involving those individuals will be handled through the school rather than by law enforcement authorities.
This same report detailed the anger, fear and frustration some of the town's parents were experiencing as the scandal unfolded.
After Wednesday evening's meeting, school patrons are
still angry and frustrated that the school board again did not
allow them to air their grievances.
Some parents had wanted the school to refuse Red Eagle Jr.'s resignation and fire him instead so that he would lose his teaching credentials. Parents say they fear that he will now go to another school where he will continue the same alleged practice.
Laura Vandewiele, who moved to the Skiatook school district four years ago, said she was "shocked and upset" at the way the matter is being handled by the school and the school board.
"The board and the superintendent have made some very bad decisions," she said. "There's been no counseling (provided) for our girls. The superintendent hasn't been present at any of the meetings, and he's receiving no phone calls."
She said Red Eagle Sr. "needs to be a superintendent first." As well, "we need some good people (on the board) who have concern for our children," she said.
On 8/24/2000 the Tulsa World report in an article titled, "DA will file charges against former coach" that Osage County, Oklahoma District Attorney Larry Stuart intended to file felony criminal charges against Coach "Noonie", Harry Red Eagle Jr.
The district attorney was quoted in the article as stating that at least one of the tapes contained nudity and while the exact charges were not yet determined they "will deal with viewing a child in a lewd and lascivious manner and viewing the private parts of a child."
This same report quoted the district attorney as follows:
"I think Red Eagle did take the videos with a lewd and lascivious purpose. I think his intent was to show them"
DA Stuart went on to state that the tapes involved 20 to 25 girls and were made during the 1998-1999 school year.
The Tulsa World in a report dated 8/25/2000 and titled "Red Eagle charged, free on bail" revealed that Harry "Noonie" Red Eagle Jr. had been charged with six felony counts in the videotaping of female players undressing in the school's locker room.
The report revealed that the charges were as follows:
Two counts of lewd acts to a child under 16
One count of procurement of obscene material
Three counts of attempting to procure obscene material.
The state requested a bail of $100,000. However Osage County Associate Judge W.R. Mattingly set Red Eagle's bail at $10,000 and issued a gag order in the case.
Quoting from this same Tulsa World report:
The petition filed Thursday accuses Red Eagle of
videotaping two 15-year-old girls, each on separate occasions --
March 2, 1999, and in the months of March or April 1999 -- and
looking "upon the body and private parts . . . in a lewd and
lascivious manner" as they undressed in the school locker
Also in March 1999, Red Eagle is accused of videotaped a female student, without her knowledge, as she completely undressed. Red Eagle then reproduced and edited the tape in such a manner that the videotape became obscene as defined by law, the petition alleges.
Key in the investigation appears to be David Douthit, a former roommate of Red Eagle's who contacted police with information that "Red Eagle had shown him more than one videotape depicting young high school aged females in various stages of undress."
The referenced Tulsa World report provided even greater detail into the ever widening scandal with the revelations quoted below:
Douthit was also a coach at Skiatook until he submitted his
resignation about a week after Red Eagle resigned.
The affidavit said Douthit told police he took three tapes from Red Eagle's home.
The affidavit also stated that the girls Skiatook police investigator James Dean recognized on the tape were allowed to view the video in order to identify the other girls. All but one of the girls were identified, the affidavit said. The girls also said parts of the tapes were shot in the junior high school boys' locker room and the girls' high school locker room.
James also stated in the affidavit that in the scenes showing the girl nude and another showing a girl's breasts, it was apparent that the camera was being held by the person taping. The image was "zooming in" alternately on the girls' breasts and pubic areas.
Those tapes showing nudity also reflected that they'd been copied using a different video format and edited so that the scenes were both in slow motion and normal speed.
At this point in the story, I feel it's important to take a look at not only the implications of this scandal but to also take a long hard look at how it was mis-handled repeatedly.
How can anyone consider it "wise" to place a member of one sex in a position of supervising athletic teams of the opposite sex? Doing so is especially foolhardy when the team is comprised of teenagers and particularly so where undressing, dressing and showering are a normal part of the activity associated with team membership. What might work perfectly well with a debate team is an open invitation to disaster with an athletic team.
Nepotism certainly plays a role in the scandal which rocked Skiatook High School. There's no way of knowing how much it contributed to the abuses and crimes committed by Harry Red Eagle Jr. but the fact is that when a camcorder was discovered in the 8th grade girls locker room three years prior to the scandal breaking the device was turned over to Red Eagle Jr. Did this incident give Red Eagle Jr. an idea for later or simply confirm he could get away with pretty much whatever he wanted owing to his father's position? Evidently we will never know as no one seems willing to investigate the earlier incident.
Once the tapes surfaced and the scandal broke open, the Skiatook, Oklahoma Police Department assigned the case to a male officer. We at Bubbaworld have no idea if there are any female officers on the Skiatook, Oklahoma police force.
If there are not, there were certainly other resources available within the state from which a female officer, investigator or case worker could have been drawn. Can you begin to imagine the disgust, horror and shame the young female victims of Red Eagle Jr. must have felt with a male police officer viewing video tapes of them semi-nude or fully nude and asking them to identify other victims?
One can only wonder if this approach to the investigation was little more than a half-baked attempt to intimidate the victims into keeping quite about a scandal which threatened to destroy their small school and town.
Continue with Part #2 of Coach Noonie and his Hidden Camcorder
FAIR USE NOTICE: This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of criminal justice, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those interested in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes.
Copyright © 2002 - 2005
All Rights Reserved