ANGLETON — A former Alvin ISD police officer had a comforter in his office that contained DNA from him and a 14-year-old girl he is accused of sexually assaulting, evidence presented to a Brazoria County jury Wednesday indicates.
Terry Roy Tennard, 43, pleaded not guilty to two first-degree felony and two second-degree felony child sexual assault charges Tuesday. A jury of six men and seven women, one who will serve as an alternate, will decide whether he is guilty.
Investigators recovered the comforter from Tennard’s office at Manvel Junior High, where he worked as a school resource officer.
There were 20 stains on the comforter that tested preliminarily positive for semen, said Jessica Lake, a forensic scientist for a Texas Department of Public Safety Crime Lab. Of those, nine stains were cut for further testing, she said. She showed the holes that had been cut in the comforter, which was propped over a board in the courtroom for the jury to see.
Two stains likely contained DNA from the victim and Tennard, DNA Analyst Tanya Dean said.
One stain was 1.08 octillion times more likely to come from Tennard and 801 billion times more likely from the now 15-year-old girl than two unknown individuals, Dean said.
A sexual assault kit collected DNA evidence from the girl’s body less than 24 hours after the Dec. 14, 2017, alleged assault, she said. A swab collected from the girl was 50.3 octillion times more likely to come from the victim, Tennard and another unknown person than three unknown people, Dean said.
Brazoria County Sheriff’s Crime Scene Investigator Mike Thomas recovered two male enhancement and desensitizing mechanisms from Tennard’s office, he said.
“I assume it’s something for sexual gratification,” Thomas said.
He never recovered something like it from a crime scene before, he testified. Thomas did not find any condoms in Tennard’s office or car, he said when asked by defense attorney Maverick Ray.
The charges followed the 15-year-old girl’s mother finding inappropriate text messages between her daughter and the officer on the girl’s cellphone, court documents state. The mother had Tennard’s phone number in her phone because he coached her son’s basketball team, documents state.
The girl eventually told her mother she and Tennard began a sexual relationship in December 2016, when she was 13, The Facts previously reported.
When Brazoria County Sheriff’s Investigator Paige Newsom first interviewed the girl, she seemed conflicted, Newsom said.
“Reluctant,” Newsom said. “She didn’t want to be there. She was torn, scared, nervous.”
After interviewing the girl, Newsom said she went to Manvel Junior High to talk to Tennard. During an audio recording played for the jury, he denied any sexual allegations but said the girl had spent time in his office.
When Newsom asked for his phone and the passcode, he refused to give the latter. She did not have a search warrant, but seized the phone and got the warrant later, she said.
At one point, Tennard told Newsom she would not be leaving the office with his phone.
“You want to call the DA, call the DA,” Newsom responded before leaving with his phone.
Phone records showed Tennard and the girl had called and text messaged each other on multiple occasions.
The girl’s phone records from Dec. 13, 2017, showed Tennard texted her saying he wanted something “sweet,” later specifying “yo candy” then more explicit messages. A text from the victim to Tennard asked him to write her a pass from class for the next day.
When Ray asked whether the same text messages were extracted from Tennard’s phone, Newsom said they were not. Sometimes the software can recover deleted messages and sometimes it does not, she said.
Tennard has been free on a $100,000 bond with conditions since Dec. 16, 2017, according to online records.
Second-degree felonies are punishable by up to 20 years in prison and first-degree felonies are punishable by up to life in prison.
The state rested its case Wednesday afternoon. The defense is expected to begin calling witnesses at 9 a.m. today in the 149th District courtroom at Brazoria County Courthouse.