Mollie Verkamp, a 27-year-old former Kentucky high school teacher, has been arrested and charged for allegedly having sex with a 17-year-old student.
Verkamp admitted to police that she had slept with the former student two years ago outside of a high school, according to a press release from the Boone County Sheriff’s Office. She also admitted to having sex with the student at her home.
Verkamp is also alleged to have sent sexually explicit photos to an 18-year-old student at Walton Verona High School and another 17-year-old student at a previous teaching job.
Verkamp has been charged with rape and sodomy.
Mollie Verkamp, a former high school teacher was indicted on Tuesday and arrested today for one (1) count of Rape 3rd Degree and one (1) count of Sodomy 3rd Degree. pic.twitter.com/QJfFqT7HmM
— Boone County Sheriff’s Office (@BooneSheriffKY) July 9, 2020
Over the course of the past year alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including 25-year-old substitute teacher Alexis Mercedes Boberg in Baltimore, Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teachers Meredith Null and Edna Longoria were arrested on similar charges.
As for why the number of these incidents has seemingly increased, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.
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.