Holly Metzler, a 46-year-old teacher in Pennsylvania, was arrested and charged for allegedly sending explicit pictures and videos to an underage student.
According to reports, Metzler — who taught special education at Altoona Area High School — allegedly had an inappropriate relationship with an underage student in November of 2018.
After receiving a tip that a student was involved in an inappropriate sexual relationship with an Altoona Area High School teacher, an investigation revealed that the teacher was the 46-year-old Metzler and that she had an inappropriate relationship with a 17-year-old senior in November 2018.
Police say that when questioned, both Metzler and the unidentified student denied any inappropriate sexual contact.
After issuing a search warrant, police say they searched the student’s phone and discovered two pictures and a video of a naked woman that appeared to have been sent through the app, SnapChat. They also said they found Metzler’s contact information on the phone.
During another interview, police say the 17-year-old identified the woman in the pictures and video as Metzler and admitted that she had sent them to him.
Police say the two never had a physical sexual relationship.
Metzler has been charged with charged with one count of unlawful contact with a minor, three counts of disseminating explicit sexual material to a minor, and one count of corruption of minors.
Following her arrest, Metzler was released on $25,000 bond. She is scheduled to be arraigned on March 8, 2019.
As for why there has been such a significant increase in instances of teachers having inappropriate relationships with students, researchers believe that technology is to blame.
According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.
SESAME (Stop Educator Sexual Abuse Misconduct & Exploitation) President Terri Miller echoed that sentiment, stating “before cell phones, we knew who our kids were talking to” but today, “kids have their own phones, they’re taking them to bed, and parents need to watch more.”
Hoffman has been one of many teachers to be charged for inappropriate conduct. Over the course of just a few months, teachers across the United States have been charged, tried, and convicted of various abuse and sex crimes.
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.
Most recently, teachers such as 29-year-old Haylie Smart, 25-year-old Alaina Ferguson, 26-year-old Amy Nowaczyk, and 32-year-old Laura Bucy were arrested and charged for similar crimes.