Stephanie Peterson, a 26-year-old former New Smyrna Beach Middle School teacher, was arrested after she allegedly had a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old student and sent him nude photos. Peterson was an eighth-grade teacher at New Smyrna Beach Middle School.
Peterson (also known as Stephanie Peterson Ferri), was arrested on two counts of lewd or lascivious battery and one count of transmission of harmful materials to a minor on Wednesday, February 28.
According to The Daytona Beach News-Journal, the court affidavit stated that Peterson would pick up the unidentified teen at his house late at night after her husband went to work and the two would go back to her place to have sex.
The relationship is believed to have started in November. A detective responded to the victim’s family’s home Tuesday after the student disclosed the relationship to his parents. The student, an 8th grader, told detectives Peterson would send him nude photos. He said she started coming to his home at night, picking him up around 11 p.m. on several occasions and bringing him back around 1 or 2 a.m.
The victim reported that Peterson told him they couldn’t tell anyone about their relationship or they’d get in trouble. He also said she bought him marijuana and bowls for smoking it, and his grades suffered after their relationship started.
Peterson is currently being held at Volusia County Branch Jail on $25,000 bond. She resigned her teaching position on Monday, February 26. Newsweek reports that school spokesperson Nancy Wait said that Ferri told the school she resigned “for personal reasons.”
Police are asking with information about this case or any other instances of sexual assault by Peterson to contact VCSO Child Exploitation Unit at 386-323-3574.
This is the latest in a string of teacher sex scandals over the last couple of years. In November, Tennessee teacher Janet Smothers was arrested. Former nutrition teacher LaToya Parker was also arrested for a relationship with a student. Florida teacher Caroline Lawson was charged with sexual assault. 26-year-old Allyson Moran was also arrested for similar crimes. The 23-year-old high school teacher Katherine Ross Ridenhour was also arrested for an inappropriate relationship.
Furthermore, Hunter Day, 22, was also arrested after a sting operation. Megan Kotarski was also arrested on similar charges. Michelle Schiffer, a 23-year-old history teacher in Texas, was also charged and arrested for allegedly having sex with a teenage student. 29-year-old Alyssia Marie Reddy was arrested in Maryland for her crimes in New Jersey. Samantha Fitzgerland, a 28-year-old, was most recently arrested and charged. Jordan Ondish was arrested for her inappropriate relationship with a 19-year-old, while 28-year-old Samantha Fitzpatrick was arrested on similar charges.
Nicole Marie Andrews was arrested as well. 32-year-old Jessica Langford was arrested and charged with sexual assault-related crimes as well. A teacher from Oregon, Andrea Baber, was accused of having a sexual relationship with a student. Robin Dunlap, a teacher in Florida, was arrested for sending illicit photos to a 15-year-old boy in Texas. Teacher and tennis coach Jennifer Olajire-Aro was also charged. 42-year-old Heather Butts of California was arrested on a second-degree felony charge. Nancy Leigh Ann Brann, a former Christian school teacher, was arrested for having sex with a student. Coine Audiat pleaded no contest to having sex with a minor in 2016. 23-year-old Darci Lake was arrested for an inappropriate relationship.