A thirty-four (34) year old female teacher was criminally charged with having a sexual relationship with a fifteen (15) year old male student on Friday, March 11, 2022 in Sac City, Iowa. Stefanie Kelsey taught at East Sac County High School in Lake View.
Kelsey was arrested by the Sac County Sheriff’s Office and charged with three (3) counts of sexual abuse in the third degree. The charges carry a maximum 10-year prison sentence per offense. Kelsey posted a $30,000.00 bond and was released from jail. She has plead not guilty to all counts and waived her rights to a preliminary hearing.
The East Sac County Community School District announced that Kelsey resigned during the criminal investigation into the matter. However, Kelsey rescinded her resignation and was then put on paid administrative leave until the end of the school year, at which time her contract will be terminated.
Although the legal requirements are relatively high in Iowa, a school district can be held responsible for the sexual abuse of a student by a teacher. Schools have a duty to reasonably protect their students. If another employee of the school failed to use reasonable care and that failure increased the risk of harm to the student because the student was relying on the school employee, the school can be liable to the harmed student.
Students who are sexually abused like the victim in this case may have the option to bring a civil case against the school district. A civil case often gives the victim a voice that may be overlooked in the criminal case. Often times civil cases are not pursued until the criminal case is resolved in order to determine what evidence there may be regarding the school’s wrongdoing.
Andreozzi + Foot has handled many cases against institutions such as schools for their part in the sexual abuse of minors. Contact us for a free and confidential consultation today.