Former Webster Groves teacher sentenced for promoting prostitution

A former teacher at a Webster Groves middle school helped promote the prostitution of two women and paid roughly 30 to 40 women for sex in the last three years, prosecutors claim in court documents filed late last month.

Those documents were filed on June 26, just three days before Robert L. Wilson, 46, entered an Alford plea to a charge of promoting prostitution in the third degree.

The Alford plea means Wilson admitted no guilt but agreed that prosecutors had evidence sufficient to get a conviction.

St. Louis County Circuit Judge Kristine A. Kerr suspended the imposition of his sentence and ordered Wilson to serve five years of probation and perform 80 hours of community service. He must get a sex offender evaluation and register as a sex offender, court records show.

Wilson’s lawyer didn’t respond to messages seeking comment Thursday.

Wilson, a Spanish teacher at Hixson Middle School since 1999, was suspended indefinitely last summer after he was charged. The case did not involve any other staff members or students, a spokeswoman said at the time.

Charging documents say Wilson, of the 4100 block of Utah Street in St. Louis, helped a prostitute solicit customers and provided transportation and security.

She was arrested Jan. 20, 2016, after he drove her to a Fenton hotel, documents say. They didn’t know that an undercover detective was the one who’d responded to the ad.

Prosecutors say Wilson met the woman several years before his arrest through the classified ads website Backpage.com, and paid her three to four times for sex at the beginning of their relationship. He had been driving her to “locations to engage in prostitution” for about a year before his arrest, the documents claim, and entered buildings to make sure she was safe.

Wilson met another woman on Backpage.com and helped her place “nearly” five ads and drove her to one meeting, the documents say. He also offered to help a third woman post ads, the documents say.

Prosecutors claim that in all, Wilson paid about 30 to 40 women for sex acts in three years.

A school official said Wilson is no longer employed by the district. Wilson still has his teaching credentials, according to Missouri’s Department of Elementary and Secondary Education, but he is listed as having no staffing assignment in either the 2016-17 or 2017-18 school years.

Source: http://www.stltoday.com/news/local/crime-and-courts/former-webster-groves-teacher-sentenced-for-promoting-prostitution/article_a99c0903-651b-5367-b464-8c524ecc9504.html