Jessica Kaplan, a 31-year-old art teacher at Mayflower High School in Little Rock, Arkansas, was arrested on a charge of first-degree sexual assault. Police announced Tuesday night that an arrest was made after “sexual contact” was reported between a Mayflower High School teacher and student. The “sexual assault incident” was reported on Monday, according to police, and the Faulkner County prosecuting attorney’s office is reviewing the case.
Under Arkansas law, first-degree sexual assault applies when a person “engages in sexual intercourse or deviate sexual activity with a minor” and “position of trust or authority over the victim.”
“On Monday May 14, 2018, the School Resource Office was informed about an incident which allegedly involved sexual contact between a Mayflower High School student and a teacher employed within the Mayflower School District,” a statement from the Mayflower Police Department read. “Upon gathering further details from the reporting party, our School Resource Officer forwarded the case information to the Mayflower Police Departments’ Criminal Investigations Divisions. Upon their review of the provided information, a case file was created in reference to the reported incident.”
Kaplan was booked at 7:47 p.m. local time and is being held on $30,000 bond.
Mayflower Police Chief Robert Alcon says more information will be released as soon as they become available.
“When further information becomes available and in which that information would not compromise or have the potential to compromise any portion of the case or its further investigation, it will be released when possible,” he said in a statement. “We understand the legal process is sometimes uncomfortable and does not appear to be time efficient. But we have a duty to abide by all applicable laws and rules of criminal procedure when processing all matters of alleged criminal activity. We would appreciate the public’s patience during this time.
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Over the course of just a few months, educators across the country were arrested for entering into an inappropriate relationship with their students, Tennessee teacher Janet Smothers, LaToya Parker, Florida teacher Caroline Lawson, 26-year-old Allyson Moran and Katherine Ross Ridenhour were all arrested on similar charges.
The list goes on to include 22-year-old Oklahoma science teacher Hunter Day, 28-year-old teacher Megan Kotarski, 23-year-old history teacher Michelle Schiffer, 29-year-old Alyssia Marie Reddy, special education teacher Jordan Ondish and 28-year-old Samantha Fitzpatrick have all been allegedly carrying on inappropriate relationships with their students.
In addition, 31-year-old Nicole Marie Andrews, 32-year-old Jessica Langford, 29-year-old Andrea Baber, 27-year-old Robin Dunlap, 27-year-old Jennifer Olajire-Aro have also been charged with these charges.
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 and 23-year-old Darci Lake was arrested for an inappropriate relationship. 27-year-old Brittany Zamora from Arizona was arrested on similar charges.