A New York high school teacher is facing trial for allegedly assaulting and performing oral sex on a teenage student.
Dori Myers has been charged on two counts – criminal sexual act in the second degree and endangering the welfare of a child. The 29-year-old, who teaches social science at The New School for Leadership and the Arts in Kingsbridge, New York City, has also been accused of massaging the 14-year-old victim, which was witnessed by a fellow teacher.
Myers was arrested on Friday, 19 January, night after the victim – believed to be her student – told another student about the alleged encounter, who later informed the school authorities.
According to the police complaint, the suspected assault took place in Upper Manhattan on 1 November, 2017.
The New York Post reported that prosecutors requested for a $50,000 (£36,000) bail for the woman, who also happens to be the wife of the sheriff's deputy, alleging that she "abused her position as a trusted authority figure". However, judge Laura Drager denied the plea and released her on her own recognisance.
Myer has also been asked to stay away from the victim under a 30-day order of protection, the Post reported.
On the other hand, the teacher's lawyer, Andrew Stoll, said that her client has denied all the accusations. Stoll said that Myer is a respected resident of Rockland County, New York, and has been a teacher at the school since 2014.
"It just takes one person's accusation to make an arrest in this town and she's a model citizen who looks forward to clearing her name," the lawyer said.
The Department of Education also said that Myer has no prior disciplinary history but called the accusations "deeply troubling". The department has not fired her, but she has been reassigned "away from students".
In a similar incident, a 39-year-old teacher in Kentucky has been jailed for having a sexual relationship with an underage student.
Traci Flynn had sexual encounters with the 14-year-old boy between 21 November and 28 December, 2017 while working at Southern Elementary School in Somerset, Kentucky. She has been sentenced to three years in jail with no probation and has to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life.