Chris Van Horne, Fort Worth Reporter
Testimony has concluded in the trial of a former Kennedale High School teacher accused of having sex with five of her students.
Testimony in the trial of a former Kennedale High School teacher accused of having sex with several of her students ended on Thursday.
The prosecution wrapped up its case early Thursday afternoon as the fifth and final victim took the stand against Brittni Colleps.
Colleps faces five counts of having an inappropriate relationship between a teacher and student.
Closing arguments are scheduled to begin Friday morning after the defense decided not to present any evidence in the trial.
The five victims, who were identified by pseudonyms, all testified to having sexual relations with Colleps in April and May 2011.
One of the victims, identified as "John," said he attended a Rangers game with Colleps in April 2011 but nothing inappropriate happened that night. He then detailed several incidents where he and the other students had sexual intercourse and oral sex with the teacher.
Colleps was a first-year English teacher and basketball coach at Kennedale High School. She is married with three small children.
Several of the victims testified Thursday to not wanting to testify in the trial with one of them, "Richard" saying he didn't want to press charges.
Arlington police Detective Jason Houston testified that several of the young men said they didn't want to press charges but it was still a crime. He said the case was a first for Arlington under the Texas statute that forbids relationships between students and teachers, even if the students are 18 years old and consent.
Defense attorney Lex Johnston argued before the court that the statute is unconstitutional, but Judge Ruben Gonzalez ultimately denied that motion. Johnston informed the court that he would not put on any evidence before the jury and he informed Colleps of her right to testify. She responded to the court with the jury no longer in the room.
"Did you want to go to trial in this case?" Johnston asked his client.
"No, sir," Colleps responded before breaking down crying.
"Did you want these young men to testify?" Johnston asked.
"No, sir," Colleps said.
Colleps agreed with her counsel not to put on a defense and stated that she nearly pleaded guilty on several occasions and was never offered a plea deal by the Tarrant County District Attorney's Office. The office could not say why no offer was extended because it's their policy not to speak to the media about a case until sentencing has concluded.
Colleps also informed the court that she had elected not to take the stand in her own defense.
"I'm not going to testify," she said.
Colleps' husband, Christopher, entered the court after the jury was dismissed and the judge and lawyers were working on jury instructions and several other mundane details. He had not been seen at the Tim Curry Criminal Justice Center by the media, as he was a potential witness. Christopher Colleps was seen consoling his wife in the courtroom, as were several other family members and friends.
On the first day of the trial, two of the victims testified about their interactions with Colleps, including several incidents of sexual relations in Colleps' two-story Arlington home. Much of the testimony was sexually graphic in nature.
All five of the teenagers were in Colleps' senior English classes in spring 2011. Several of the young men, now in college, read graphic text message sent between them and Colleps, often while they were in class at Kennedale High School.
Kennedale High School's principal testified on Tuesday that Colleps was immediately suspended when the allegations were made. She later resigned from the district.
Closing arguments being 9 a.m. on Friday.