A band teacher at South Lenoir High School in Deep Run has been arrested for having a sexual relationship with a student.
The Lenoir County Sheriff's Office says 28-year-old Jennifer Sinclair is charged with two counts of sexual activity with a male student, who is 18. She was arrested Friday and was released after posting a $15,000 bond.
Lenoir County Schools says Sinclair was a band teacher at South Lenoir High School, but resigned a day before her arrest. The woman had been with the school system since August 2007, and had also taught at Woodington Middle School.
“The school system acted quickly to investigate the rumors of this relationship," said Sheriff Chris Hill. "My officers ran with the information and obtained a formal confession from Sinclair and were able to obtain an interview with the student, which corroborated the statement of Sinclair. None of the acts are believed to have occurred at the school and the relationship appears to have been of a short duration.”
State law concerning teachers having sexual relations with a student
§ 14-27.7. Intercourse and sexual offenses with certain victims; consent no defense.
(b) If a defendant, who is a teacher, school administrator, student teacher, school safety officer, or coach, at any age, or who is other school personnel, and who is at least four years older than the victim engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with a victim who is a student, at any time during or after the time the defendant and victim were present together in the same school, but before the victim ceases to be a student, the defendant is guilty of a Class G felony, except when the defendant is lawfully married to the student. The term "same school" means a school at which the student is enrolled and the defendant is employed, assigned, or volunteers. A defendant who is school personnel, other than a teacher, school administrator, student teacher, school safety officer, or coach, and is less than four years older than the victim and engages in vaginal intercourse or a sexual act with a victim who is a student, is guilty of a Class A1 misdemeanor. This subsection shall apply unless the conduct is covered under some other provision of law providing for greater punishment. Consent is not a defense to a charge under this section. For purposes of this subsection, the terms "school", "school personnel", and "student" shall have the same meaning as in G.S. 14-202.4(d). For purposes of this subsection, the term "school safety officer" shall include a school resource officer or any other person who is regularly present in a school for the purpose of promoting and maintaining safe and orderly schools. (1979, c. 682, s. 1; 1979, 2nd Sess., c. 1316, s. 9; 1981, c. 63; c. 179, s. 14; 1993, c. 539, s. 1132; 1994, Ex. Sess., c. 24, s. 14(c); 1999-300, s. 2; 2003-98, s. 1.)