The Huffington Post | By David Moye
A high school English teacher in Connecticut was charged with sexual assault and selling marijuana stemming from an alleged relationship with one of her students.
Officers in Stamford have accused Danielle Watkins, 32, of having a sexual relationship with an 18-year-old student and then threatening to fail him when he tried to break off the relationship, NBC Connecticut reports.
The Stamford Police Department said the student, who attended Stamford High School, told authorities that he’d had several sexual encounters with Watkins in her car between September 2013 and June 2014. The alleged sex took place during school hours but not on school grounds, he told police.
The teen also alleges Watkins, who is married with two kids, sent him naked pictures of herself and allowed him to use her car even though she was aware he was not licensed to drive.
The alleged victim says Watkins gave him marijuana, which they smoked with one of his friends on and off school grounds during school hours, WTNH TV reports.
When the student allegedly tried to dump Watkins, he told police she assaulted him and accused him of being with someone else. Watkins also threatened to fail him unless the relationship continued, police said.
Shortly after the allegations were reported, police executed a search warrant of Watkins’s car during a motor vehicle stop.
During the search, police said Watkins tried to hide her cell phone and was allegedly verbally combative after marijuana was discovered in the vehicle.
The car and phone were seized. A forensic examination of the phone revealed more than 2,000 text messages to the teen, several hundred phone calls to him and naked pictures of Watkins, according to the Stamford Advocate.
Superintendent Winifred Hamilton said Watkins has been placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of the investigation.
“We are aware of the allegations,” Stamford School District Superintendent Winifred Hamilton said, according to the Courant newspaper. “We take these issues very seriously and always act to protect the welfare of our students.”
Watkins turned herself into police on Thursday and was charged with two counts of second-degree sexual assault and sale of marijuana.
In addition, Watkins faces charges for selling marijuana and risk of injury to a minor for alleged involvement with a 15-year-old student, possibly the alleged victim’s friend.
She was released after posting $100,000 bail.
Her next court date is July 31 in Connecticut State Superior Court.