Crime

Former Warner Robins teacher has banishment from Houston County lifted early

Mark Taylor
Mark Taylor

A former Warner Robins teacher and coach who is on probation for stalking his former fiancee had his banishment from Houston County lifted Friday, a year early.

Mark Taylor, 52, has moved on with his life, has remarried, owns a speed training business for athletes and has complied with all the terms of his probation, according to his motion to amend the conditions of his probation.

Taylor, who lives in Byron, sought removal of the banishment so he could see his daughter and help his ailing 76-year-old mother and 50-year-old sister. His family members live in Warner Robins, and his wife works in Houston County. He also wants to be able to coach some of his clients who live in Houston County instead of them having to travel to Byron in Peach County.

"All of (my) family is seeking the same thing -- help from their son, brother, father and husband they love," Taylor wrote in his motion.

Several people were in the courtroom Friday on behalf of Taylor, including a Warner Robins pastor. Meanwhile, the victim's advocate communicated with the victim, who is teaching in South Korea, via the Internet, Assistant District Attorney Clif Woody said by telephone.

Chief Judge George Nunn agreed to a compromise that lifted the ban except for two months in the summer when the victim will be back in Houston County visiting family, Woody said. The victim was in agreement with the compromise, Woody said.

Taylor cannot be in Houston County from June 23 through Aug. 23 this year. He remains on probation through May 2017, Woody said.

Taylor, a former Northside Middle School seventh-grade science teacher and former Warner Robins High School track and field coach, was sentenced to probation in 2009 after a jury found him guilty of stalking in 2007. The banishment was a condition of that probation.

When convicted, Taylor already was on probation for interfering with a witnesses by intimidating his former fiancee, but his probation was revoked and Taylor was sent to prison. He was released in July 2012.

Taylor also had previous convictions for domestic violence and harassing phone calls against his ex-wife, according to the Houston County District Attorney's Office.

"I'm remarried now, I'm coaching, I'm doing well, and I've got all my athletes with me and life is good," Taylor said by phone Friday. "That was a chapter in my life of things that happened.

"Some I did do. Some I did not do. But I've learned from 'em and now, you know, I just want to turn that page," he said.

To contact writer Becky Purser, call 256-9559, or find her on Twitter@becpurser.

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