OCALA, Fla. (WCJB) – A Marion County teacher has been arrested after sheriff’s deputies said she repeatedly molested a former students of hers.
This is now the third school district employee to be arrested this year for sexually abusing students.
Frederick Lamar Hamilton, who is a former paraprofessional a Liberty Middle School, was arrested on Thursday October 1st after a 17-year-old told deputies that Hamilton sexually assaulted him a number of times over several years.
And in August, Ocala Police arrested 31-year-old Nick Elder, who was a Vanguard High School employee that admitted to having sexual relations with a 17-year-old Vanguard student.
The most recent incident involved a 30-year-old teacher named Christina Sanchez‐Rodriguez and her student, who at the time was 6-years-old, which originally took place two years ago, when the boy was in second grade at Evergreen Elementary School.
According to the deputy report, Sanchez‐Rodriguez told the victim that she liked him like a ‘boyfriend’ and not to tell anyone.
Deputies said that she would pull the boy from lunch and give him special attention. She would also contact the victim’s family on the weekends as well to take him “fun places” including going to see a famous athlete and to Sky Zone.
Deputies also learned that Sanchez‐Rodriguez would give the boy different gifts including a necklace with the words ‘Te Amo’ which is Spanish for ‘I love you.’
During an interview with the Florida Department of Children and Families, investigators learned that the boy told Sanchez‐Rodriguez several times that he did not want to her to touch him, but she would get upset and ignore him during class.
When the boy was finally removed from her class due to this behavior, she quit.
The boy finally spoke up about the situation when he found out one of his family members would be in Sanchez‐Rodriguez’s kindergarten class, as a substitute teacher at a different school.
“We have more than 7,000 employees and employees make decisions on their own sometimes and sometimes those decisions are poor choices and bad decision and we have great people who work for our system but unfortunately there are some who do wrong and make bad choices and we deal with those situations, usually those folks are fired and no longer work in our school district and we move forward,” MCPS Director of Public Relations, Kevin Christian said.
Law enforcement officials said they hope parents talk to their children as there could be other victims in this case.
“It’s unfortunate that in society that you have acts of this kind that go on. We do all we can to protect our children and we’ve got to continue to do that. We have to be vigilant and even more vigilant these days protecting our children from predators such as this and that just begins with a simple conversation with our child letting them know it’s okay to talk,” MCSO Public Information Director, Sgt. Paul Bloom said.
Several parents have posted about this case on social media. One parent TV20 spoke too, Shawn Mincy said, this is upsetting to hear.
“As a parent you send your kids to school to not only to learn but you leave their safety in the hands of the teachers and the administrators at the school, so yes it is upsetting when a person takes their authority and they use that to take advantage of of a child that they’re support to be protecting and teaching,” Mincy said.
Sanchez‐Rodriguez was arrested Friday last week on a 25,000 dollar bond. She has since made that bond and has been fired from the school district.
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