Former teacher pleads “not guilty” to raping student, other charges | #teacher | #children | #kids

Former Habersham County teacher Leslie Terrell has plead “not guilty” to the slew of charges against her, which include statutory rape and child molestation of a student.

Terrell resigned from her job as a Habersham County Ninth Grade Academy teacher in early March after school administrators began investigating inappropriate text messages she allegedly sent to one of her students. On March 19, 11 days after her resignation, the school system contacted the Habersham County Sheriff’s Department regarding the texts.

Habersham Sheriff’s Lt. Matthew Wurtz said the investigation uncovered that those text messages escalated to a physical sexual relationship.

Terrell turned herself in on March 26 after a warrant was issued for her arrest. Her bond was set at $71,400, which was paid. Terrell was then arrested again May 21 for violating her bond, allegedly contacting the student. After her re-arrest, her bond was revoked, and she received four additional charges.

Terrell now faces charges including child molestation, statutory rape, sexual battery, enticing a child, influencing a witness, making false statements, obstruction/hindering law enforcement, distributing obscene materials, electronically furnishing obscene materials to a minor and interference with custody.

She has since plead “not guilty” to her charges, and has demanded a trial by jury. She is being represented by the Suwanee-based Carter/Pilgrim Law Firm.

The defense claims that Terrell was stopped by an officer with the Habersham County Sheriff’s Office without cause, who detained, handcuffed, interrogated and searched her without giving Terrell her Miranda Rights. Her defense made a motion that any evidence gathered during this detainment not be allowed or considered in her trial, due to their argument that it violated her fourth, fifth and sixth amendments.

In another motion, the defense shared that Terrell believes that there is a video of her arrest, and that the video contains information that could help prove her innocence.

A date for her trial has not been set.

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