Time and time again, you see beautiful female teachers are featured across news platforms with their underage student hook-ups. Some teachers get off lucky while others have to serve hard time for their crimes. The rest of the world watches their trials and passes their own judgment. Some of the most scandalous and surprising teacher-student affairs have made a dent in history… and in the justice system.
Debra Lafave was a Florida school teacher who pleaded guilty to lewd battery in 2005. She was charged with having inappropriate relations with a 14-year-old student on more than four occasions, she was 25 years old at the time. Her plea bargain excluded her from serving time in a prison, and she was instead sentenced to three years of house arrest and seven years of probation. Lafave was a controversial case that brought the “beauty privilege” topic to light within the public school and court systems. Her lawyer famously said she was “too beautiful” for jail.
During an interview with Matt Lauer, he asked her why she thought she gained so much attention and suggested, “because you’re pretty?” She responded, “I think so, and sex sells.” The victim’s mother found the interview disturbing and said, “She was absolutely the aggressor from the first official moment.” In 2009 she was granted unsupervised contact with some children. She is now a mother. Her probation was terminated as of 2014, although she remains a registered sex offender.
Hope Jacoby, then 24 years old, was an athletic trainer at Tustin High School and hooked up with a 16-year-old student. After authorities found suggestive images in the student’s text messages which alerted them about the inappropriate relationship. They were believed to have a physical relationship that lasted a year, but it isn’t confirmed whether or not they broke the law on campus grounds.
Jacoby was arrested and charged on the last day of school in 2008. Although her charges were all felonies, she was only given three years of informal probation with 240 hours of community service to complete.
Mary Kay Letourneau
Mary Kay Letourneau is a household name because of her student-teacher affair with Vili Fualaau in 1997-98. Vili was only twelve years old when the relationship began, they met when she was his second-grade teacher. She later taught him again in sixth grade. She apparently fell in love with Vili, and the two pursued a forbidden love affair which she would later serve jail time for. Letourneau became pregnant by Vili not once, but two times, each pregnancy conceived just before she was sent to prison. She was released in 2004 and the taboo couple married in 2005.
There have been various TV programs and even a Lifetime movie about the couple. In a 2015 interview with Barbara Walters, Mary Kay discussed the couple’s first physical encounter when Vili was just thirteen years old. She said, “The incident was a late night, and it didn’t stop with a kiss. And I thought that it would, and it didn’t.” In the same interview Vili admitted that he suffered from depression and that the experience was like “a hopelessness, and no body understands you.” Vili became a DJ and the two appeared at “Hot For Teacher” nights around the country. In May of 2017, Vili filed for divorce. Mary Kay’s attorney issued a statement that included, “When one person is unhappy in the relationship, the other person can’t be happy either. And there are two people in this relationship.”
Virginia Houston Hinckley
Virginia Houston Hinckley was a 26-year-old teacher in St. Augustine, Florida who turned herself in for having relations with a minor. She hooked up with her student at a local park, a 16-year-old boy who later supplied all the necessary information to police. Hinckley, who was also married at the time, was suspended with pay until the trial came to a close. She was also apparently pregnant with her first child when the whole situation took place.
Nicole Dufault, a former teacher in the state of New Jersey, has been accused of assaulting six teenage boys who attended her high school. Pleading not guilty to the charges, Dufault faces 40 counts of criminal behavior that can be supported with video evidence from the boys’ cell phones. The 36-year-old former language arts teacher has had her teaching license and two certificates revoked. The defense claimed that she suffers from frontal lobe syndrome after she had brain surgery following pregnancy complications. The case is still awaiting trial.
Melody Lippert & Michelle Ghirelli
Melody Lippert (pictured left) and Michelle Ghirelli (pictured right) organized a small campout for five California students. Lippert was a teacher at South Hills High School and Ghirelli was employed by the Unified School District. Under the influence of alcohol and cocaine, Lippert instigated inappropriate behavior between Ghirelli and a 17-year-old boy. Apparently they organized the whole camping trip over a group text and the teenage boys were their former students.
Deputy District Attorney Kristen Brasic was quoted as saying how the victims were dealing with the situation, “I know everyone looks at this like they were getting high fives in the hallway, but they were absolutely mortified and embarrassed.” Meanwhile, Ghirelli had to forgo completing her Masters degree and lost her teaching career and Lippert was not able to accompany her children to school.
Melody & Michelle’s Conviction
The women were able to avoid having to register as sex offenders and received probation after accepting a plea deal. They both permanently lost their teaching credentials and pled guilty to felony charges. Ghirelli and Lippert both plead guilty to felony statutory rape. In addition, Ghirelli plead guilty to a felony count of furnishing an illicit substance. Lippert received probation and also was ordered to do 15 days of work with the DA’s office or face three months in jail. Ghirelli was ordered to spend six months in a live-in, locked-down drug rehab center or she could face six months in jail. They were both also sentenced to three years’ probation.
Sarah Jones is a former Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader and high school teacher who was convicted of misconduct with a minor. She had an affair with her 17-year-old student, Cody York, (she was 26 years old at the time) and was able to avoid time behind bars by simply pleading guilty to custodial interference.
The lovebirds became engaged in 2013, just a year after she was charged with hooking up with a student. In an interview with Dateline Sarah conceded that her actions were wrong. She said, “It is wrong for a teacher to have any type of relationship that crosses the line with a student.” Her teen lover-turned-husband maintained he was not taken advantage of saying, “I didn’t like being called the victim, because I wasn’t a victim. I wasn’t a victim of anything. She never did anything to me.” The two are now married and have a son together and are expecting a second child in July of 2017.
Danielle Watkins was a 32-year-old teacher at Stamford High School when she engaged in a physical relationship with one of her underage students. Watkins was set to accept a plea bargain that would ensure a maximum jail sentence of four years, the minimum being nine months. She apologized in court saying “As a parent I understand how parents need to know their children are safe when they go to school. I am sorry and know I betrayed a sacred trust and make no excuses.” However, the convicted felon sabotaged her own deal when she threatened the victim at a Dunkin’ Donuts, allegedly saying “`You are going to get yours.” This broke the conditions of her bail, and she was re-sentenced to five years.
Kimberly Naquin was a 26-year-old geography teacher at Destrahan High School in Louisiana. She had a physical relationship with her female, 16-year-old student that lasted for nearly a year. Naquin was charged with 10 counts of “carnal knowledge” with a minor. She wasn’t charged until 2016 although the relationship had begun two years previous. She was subsequently sentenced to a five year suspended sentence and will also have to register as a sex offender for fifteen years. The female victim told the court, “I thought she was cool because she paid special attention to me.” Naquin apologized in court to the victim and her parents saying, “I betrayed your trust.” Several years before she was charged, Naquin and her student thought they had been found out but it turns out she wasn’t the first teacher to be caught hooking up with a Destrahan High student…
Rachel Respess & Shelley Dufresne
Rachel Respess and Shelley Dufresne weren’t just convicted for their student-teacher hook-up, they were sued by the parents of the 16-year-old student, which exposed the entire ugly affair. They were colleagues of Kimberly Naquin, another offender, at Destrahan High School. Dufresne, then 33-years-old, initiated the relationship, reaching out the boy on social media when he was out sick from school one day. The relationship became wildly inappropriate from there, as it was uncovered that they were intimate more than 40 times together.
Respess offered up the use of her apartment to the pair following a football game. It was also revealed that she joined them as well, and the act went on for nine hours. Both teachers were arrested in October of 2014. See what happened next.
Rachel & Shelley’s Conviction
Dufresne accepted a plea bargain and pleaded guilty to acts of obscenity, which led to 3 years of active probation, a stint in a mental health facility, and a $1,000 fine. Respess walked away from the incident with a slap on the wrist. She simply pleaded guilty to failing to report a felony. Both of the teachers also previously attended the school and Dufrense’s father is a local judge. Yikes!
After they were caught and facing jail time, the grandfather of the victim told MailOnline, “He is really down about it right now, All boys that age want to brag about what they are doing. He didn’t expect it would come to this.” After their slap on the wrist, Shelley Dufrense posted on her Instagram a photo of her smiling from ear to ear, with three smiling emojis and the comment, “my mood today”.
Stacy Schuler was sentenced to five years in prison after drinking alcohol with some of her students, and then engaging in an inappropriate “group experience.” Schuler was a 34-year-old physical education teacher at Mason High School at the time of her crime and has since requested early release after just seven months in jail. The families of the teenage boys opposed this request, with multiple boys writing to the judge about how their lives have become nightmares.
Schuler’s defense was that she was having psychological issues and coping with them by drinking. However, she also caused her victims to face horrible consequences. One of her victims said, ‘Most people in society feel that it’s every 17-year-old male’s fantasy to sleep with their teacher. Being young and naive at the time, it was. What most people fail to realize is that this fantasy could be turned into a nightmare that I’m still living in today.” Schuler apologized in court saying, “I know that I can’t take back some of the things that have happened and there will be lifelong consequences from my actions and I’m very sorry for that.” She was released after serving 13 months.
25-year-old Amy Mcelhenney taught Spanish at Hebron High School. Her reputation as a former Miss Texas contestant made her an admired member of the faculty, and she was accused of having a physical relationship with an 18-year-old student. She was indicted for the allegation, but not convicted since there was no proof that the illicit activity actually took place. Regardless, Amy lost her teaching certificate partly due to some flirtatious messages found on the student’s phone.
Brittni Colleps was a 28-year-old Texas high school teacher who had intercourse with five of her students at once. Three out of the five students who participated in the illegal act testified against their former teacher, although they remained in support of Colleps and did not want to see her prosecuted. Video evidence was passed around the school and Colleps was forced to turn herself in to the police. She was sentenced to five years in prison.
She ended up spending two years in prison and remained on supervised parole until August of 2017. Despite the horrible situation, Colleps had one person in her corner … her husband. Christopher Colleps told the media, “I want you to know I love my wife. I have loved my wife since the moment I laid eyes on her over 11 years ago. I have always supported my wife, and I will continue to support my wife through this whole, entire ordeal.”
Megan Crafton used to be the cheerleading coach at Shelbyville High School. She had a student-teacher relationship with a 17-year-old, as they hooked up on two separate occasions. Crafton was placed on probation for 18 months and had to perform 25 hours of community service. Crafton was also engaged according to her social media, where she proclaimed that her supposed fiance, “had her whole heart.” Her fiance had no comment on the matter.
Carole Ann Hope
Carole Ann Hope, 38, received two years in prison for engaging in illicit conduct with her 14-year-old student. The former math teacher was married with a son at the time of her arrest. Hope will also serve five years of probation after her sentence, and her teaching license was revoked. She will also remain on the sex offender registry for the rest of her life.
In court, Hope apologized saying, “I am so sorry that I’ve disappointed so many people, and I really would like mercy and leniency from the court, please. She requested leniency especially for the sake of her seven-year-old son. The victim’s mother forgave Mrs. Hope and also asked the judge to consider Hope’s son when making his decision.
Kathryn Ronk, 30, was a Catholic school Spanish teacher who was initially sentenced to prison for 6-15 years. She had a physical relationship with a 15-year-old student inside her classroom and on many occasions, which led to her being charged with two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. Originally, she faced up to life in prison before her charges were lessened. Ronk told the court while sobbing, “I’m so sorry for the victim and his family, for the school and the community, my family… and I’m so sorry for my husband.”
Ashley Anderson took advantage of four of her students, aged 16-18, on several occasions. The former math teacher was facing up to 15 years in prison, but was ultimately sentenced to five and must pay a $750 fine. She will also be placed on supervised probation for 10 years after her release. She will also have to register as a sex offender which entails submitting a DNA sample for authorities to have on file. Anderson apologized in court saying, “I know I have let my family down, but I want everyone to know that I am addressing these problems the best I can.”
Haeli Noelle Wey
Former Texas teacher Haeli Noelle Wey, who was 28 years old at the time, had intercourse with two of her 17-year-old students. She first became involved with one student while on a student ministry trip to Africa. She then left the first student for another student, and it was then that the affair came to light. She lost her job and her teaching certificate. The prosecutor later recommended ten years of probation and she was not ordered to register as a sex offender.
Gabriela Compton, 20, was a middle school teacher’s aide, who seduced her 14-year-old student. When confronted with her crime by police and asked if she knew what she did was illegal she replied, “Yeah, I know.” She wasn’t sentenced to prison for her crime, but she received a lifetime of probation. Her sentence spurred public outrage as she had also made advances at another young student, without ever being penalized for it. She will, however, have to register as a sex offender.
Former, Minnesota High School teacher Gail Gagne, 28, is the daughter and granddaughter of two wrestling stars. She tarnished the family name when she had an intimate relationship with her 16-year-old student. She was placed on probation for two years after serving one year jail while she awaited her trial in 2011. The case became a center of controversy. Several years later, The Washington Post published a piece which decried Gail as she was treated as the victim while the actual victim a young African American boy was treated as the criminal when he was just a teen. Her victim, Cameron Clarkson, spoke to the Post and said, “I was referred to as simply a physical body, with no regard for the development of my mind or soul.”
Band teacher Alison Peck was arrested and convicted of misconduct with a 16-year-old student. Peck’s original sentence was five years’ probation and an offender’s treatment course. She was also ordered to have no contact with the student, however, she later met up with him and had a sexual liaison once again. After, the student’s friends reported the incident to police, Peck’s sentence was reinstated and she must spend five years behind bars for breaching her probation requirements.
Former Covington Community High School teacher Tiffany Mosson was found guilty of having a student-teacher affair with 17-year-old. After a lengthy courtship that began in class and eventually ended up in the bedroom, Mosson was charged with child seduction. She is currently on probation.
Nadia Diaz used to be the social sciences teacher at Washington Union High School in Fresno. Diaz was accused of having an affair with a 15-year-old student and was arrested 2011 after colleagues caught on to her misconduct. Her teaching license was revoked and she received three years of probation along with 30 days in a treatment program. She did not have to register as a sex offender. The student was supportive of the sentence and said he was the aggressor and didn’t want to ruin his former teacher’s life. However, his mother was not so supportive and said it had affected the entire family.
Heather Daughdrill was a 28-year-old Bible school teacher who chose to sin. She engaged in intercourse with a 13-year-old boy who she met a Christian Bible summer camp. She was charged with carnal knowledge of a child and kidnapping. She entered into a plea agreement and was later sentenced to a year in prison.
Heather Chiasson was a former English teacher, working at a high school in Louisiana. She maintained a student-teacher affair with a 17-year-old boy for almost a year, until she was arrested in 2012. She was sentenced to probation on behalf of a misdemeanor since the student was the age of consent.
In February 2012, Lauren Redfern was caught having relations in the school bathroom with her 17-year-old student. She was the Colorado high school’s basketball coach and gym teacher, but is obviously unemployed since the incident. She escaped jail time and was sentenced to probation with sex offender treatment.
Kristin Leone was arrested in May, 2012 for having an inappropriate relationship with her high school student. In court, the former teacher argued that her own student-teacher affair as a teenager influenced her decision to engage in improper conduct with her student. She was sentenced to a year in jail and five years of probation after her release. Kristin apologized in court saying, “I want to say I am sorry to the victim’s family, to my family and my friends.”
Pamela Rogers Turner
Pamela Rogers Turner, then 27, is considered to be one of the most disturbed and misbehaved teachers of all time. Turner was the physical education teacher at Centertown Elementary School and had a three-month affair with her 13-year-old student. She was originally sentenced to eight years in prison but was released after serving nine months. She cried in court and told the judge, “I have humiliated myself. What I did was wrong, I am willing to do anything to rehabilitate myself.” Turner contacted her victim once she regained freedom and attempted to seduce him, but got caught and placed back in prison for another two years. She was later sent back to jail in 2015 after conspiring to smuggle in cell phones to the prison she was formerly housed.
Kinsley Wentzky was a 34-year old English teacher, married with two kids and working at Dreher High School in South Carolina. She was sentenced to two years in prison for her affairs with students. One student was 16, and the other was 17. Her sentence was eventually suspended and she was placed on probation for three years instead.
Kathryn Murray, 28, became involved with her middle school student in 2012. The student’s 12-year-old brother walked in on the teacher and her pupil, and notified the school and authorities immediately. Murray was given time served, and because she spent two years in prison, she was released and is currently on probation. Her victim was a boy adopted from another country who barely spoke any English not long before. His father told the media, “She robbed him of his childhood.”
However, after her release, in 2013, the boy’s mother noticed he was sneaking out of his room and hired a private investigator to follow him. He was found at Murray’s father’s house with the teacher, once again. Again, she was arrested, and will be registered as a sex offender for life.
Carrie McCandless, 30, was having an affair with her student right under the principal’s nose… who also happened to be her husband. The Colorado high school teacher had an extramarital affair with her 17-year-old student and turned herself in, in 2006. The victim spoke about the situation and said, “I told them I would take the blame. She had a lot more to lose than I did. So I wanted to take the blame.” However, he said he later lost friends over the situation, especially after she was turned in because she was many of the kid’s “favorite” teacher. She spent 45 days in jail, but was sent back to prison after she was busted for a DUI and sharing physical intimacy with someone other than her legal husband.
Deanna Higgins, 27, was charged with improper relations between a student and educator in 2009. The former science teacher at Spring High School in Texas had relations with her 16-year-old student at least twice during the school year. One time was in the student’s truck, where she left behind her panties that the student kept in his vehicle as a souvenir. (That backfired when detectives later found them.)
Her husband discovered the affair when he saw she was receiving text messages from someone named “T”. Higgins was sentenced to four years on probation.
Amy Northcutt and her husband Justin were simultaneously convicted with seduction charges and were sentenced to three months in jail. The Turlock Christian teachers sent naked, lewd texts to a 16-year-old female student and attempted to arrange an adult encounter with her. There is no proof that there was direct, physical contact other than Justin seen in a discussion at the student’s home one day.
Brianne Altice, 37, used to be the English teacher at Davis High School in Salt Lake City. She was also married with two kids. She stood at four separate trials, and was indicted at each one for improper misconduct with a student minor. Two of the students that she shared intimate relations with maintain the fact that they indeed had “romantic relationships” with the teacher that lasted for at least a year. She even continued to sleep with some of her students after her initial arrest.
Altice was sentenced to 2-30 years in prison. As of February 2017, she has been denied parole. Altice said that she had been belittled at home and suffers self-esteem problems which lead to her indiscretions. She told the court, “I am human and I messed up during a very vulnerable time in my life.” However, one of the victims mother’s countered her statements saying, “You hurt my son in ways that you will never know. You hurt all of those boys.”
Elizabeth Scroggs, 32, had a secret relationship with an 18-year-old student at the Georgia high school she instructed at. The physical portion of the affair did not take place on school grounds, even though an anonymous tipster claimed otherwise. Her arrest surprised many people, as she was an award-winning educator within the community and had been given the title “Best of The Best”. She was released from jail on a $25,000 bond.
Amber Jennings, 31, has outraged the public with her student-teacher conduct case. She had intimate relations with her 16-year-old student while he filmed it in her classroom. She has taken to the press and stated that he is not a victim and she will write a book detailing her side of the story. After it was said that the boy’s mother would be pursuing a civil suit, she reportedly said, “It is just unfortunate that she would go so far as to ruin her son’s life in order to profit.”
Jennings is required to serve two years of probation. She was also ordered to turn in her teaching license, stay away from the victim, and undergo psychological evaluation. Although she was required to undergo sex offender treatment, she did not have to register as a sex offender.
Rebekah Todd was a 25-year-old gym teacher at White River High School when she had an affair with a 17-year-old football player. She had previously gotten drunk and showed a video of a strip-tease to female students while at a graduation party, igniting a reputation that’s simply not appropriate for an educator. Todd was sentenced to six months in jail after she was accused of performing oral sex on the 17 year old. She asked to be released early after becoming pregnant with her husband’s child and said she failed to set boundaries, however she was denied early release and served six months in jail.
Michelle Preston, 28, had illicit relationships with two of her students. Both were over the age of consent, 17 and 18, however she still faced consequences for abusing her position of power. When the relationships were first uncovered and she was placed on leave, she apparently tried to commit suicide. She drove her truck off a ledge and crashed into a creek. She had to be airlifted to the hospital with serious injuries. Ultimately, she received probation time for inappropriate activity with a student. If she violates the terms of her probation she is required to serve 32 months in prison. Apparently, now a mother herself, her lawyer, Scott Toth, said in 2011, “She’s got this newborn. She’s got a family, just wants to work towards the future at this point.”