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A 25-year-old woman has been sentenced to ten years behind bars after admitting that she had an inappropriate sexual relationship with a student.
According to police reports, Alexandria Vera, who was 23-years-old and working as a middle school teacher when the relationship began, met the then 13-year-old boy when she was teaching a summer course.
According to the details she gave officers, the boy initiated contact by sending her a message on social media and asking for her phone number. From there, thing escalated quickly. Shortly after giving him her number, she picked him up, drove him around in her car, and it was then that they kissed for the first time. The very next day, she went to his parent’s house while they were out and the two had sex.
Following this initial encounter, the two continued their sexual relationship and met nearly every day.
To make matters worse, it turns out that shortly after the relationship began, the boy’s parents became aware of the situation and instead of intervening, they actually supported it. The two were invited to family gatherings where the teacher was introduced as the boy’s girlfriend and in order to protect them, the father and son actually moved in with her. When questioned, the teacher and his parents would say that it was the father she was dating, not the son. Vera even told neighbors that the boy was her brother.
During this time she became pregnant with the 13-year-old’s child, however, when Child Protective Services showed up unexpectedly based on a report of a possible sexual relationship with a minor, she aborted the child.
In addition to her own inappropriate relationship, she also allowed several of the boy’s eighth-grade classmates to party and drink beer in her home, as well as allowing two of the children to have sex in her home.
Although she initially denied having sex with the boy, she allowed police officers to look through her phone where they found a long string of text messages between the two.
Learn more from our Texas sex assault attorneys here.
During her trial, her lawyer argued that she should be simply placed on probation because she had suffered from an abusive household and a therapist, who testified on her behalf, stated that she believed Vera actually loved the boy. The therapist further remarked that she didn’t believe the defendant was a pedophile or a danger to other children.
Ultimately, after reviewing the case, the judge determined after reading text messages and letters from both the boy and his mother that they too had to be held partially responsible. He sentenced the teacher to ten years in prison with the possibility of parole in five years and removed the boy from his parents custody and placed him in foster care. He then ordered both parents to undergo intensive therapy.
While parents always want to believe that their child is safe when they send them to school, the fact is that on average, 1 in 10 children become victims of sexual assault. It’s not just teachers that can use their position of authority to force themselves on children and to intimidate them into silence. Other abusers can include anyone who is associated with the school – bus drivers, teaching assistants, coaches, or even janitors.
It’s important for parents and any other caring adult in a child’s life to keep an eye out for the common signs of sexual abuse. This may include:
Don’t ever be afraid to question a situation – if you feel that a child is in danger, contact the authorities right away.