The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

Crime & Courts

September 27, 2012

Neosho teacher under investigation for alleged inappropriate electronic contact with student

NEOSHO, Mo. — The Newton County Sheriff’s Department is investigating a Neosho High School teacher in connection with alleged inappropriate electronic contact with a student, Sheriff Ken Copeland said Thursday.

Copeland said the investigation into the teacher — a man whose name he declined to disclose at this time — began when a parent, concerned about contact between the teacher and the parent’s 15-year-old daughter, contacted the department.

“There have been some allegations about some improper conversation concerning their daughter,” he said.

When asked to describe the content of the conversations and why the matter is being investigated as improper, Copeland said he wouldn’t discuss that. He acknowledged, when asked, that the conversations allegedly had taken place electronically, in the form of text messages.

Copeland said the parent is the only person who has lodged a complaint about the teacher with his department.

“We have been given some names of the possibility of others (student victims), and that’s what we’re checking into,” he said. “That’s what we haven’t substantiated yet. We’re in the process of that.”

Copeland said his department has confiscated the telephone of the student as well as the computer and telephone of the individual under investigation. All of the devices have been turned over to the Southwest Missouri Cyber Crimes Task Force for analysis, he said.

He said he hopes to have the investigation concluded within the next few days.

“Then it will be determined if there’s a criminal offense; (if there is) it will go to the prosecutor’s office,” he said. “If the allegations are not substantiated, it would be turned over to the school to be handled as a personnel issue.”

Copeland said administrators with the Neosho School District are “cooperating fully” with the investigation.

Superintendent Alma Stipp could not be reached for comment Thursday afternoon.

1
Text Only
Crime & Courts
Local News
Sports
Facebook
Poll

Given that the U.S. Supreme Court has ruled that electronic devices and communications are protected from searches and seizure without a warrant, do you think Missouri needs Amendment 9 added to its constitution?

A. Yes.
B. No.
     View Results
Twitter Updates
Follow us on twitter
NDN Video
Raw: Japanese Soldiers Storm Beach in Exercises Raw: Weapons Fire Hits UN School in Gaza Raw: Rocket Launches Into Space With Cargo Ship Broken Water Main Floods UCLA Two Women Narrowly Avoid Being Hit by Train In Virginia, the Rise of a New Space Coast New Sanctions on Key Sectors of Russian Economy Crayola Announces Family Attraction in Orlando US Ready to Slap New Sanctions on Russia Kerry: Not Worried About Israeli Criticism Boater Rescued From Edge of Kentucky Dam Girl Struck by Plane on Florida Beach Dies Rodents Rampant in Gardens Around Louvre House to Vote on Slimmed-down Bill for Border Looming Demand Could Undercut Flight Safety Raw: 2 Shells Hit Fuel Tank at Gaza Power Plant Raw: Massive Explosions From Airstrikes in Gaza Giant Ketchup Bottle Water Tower Up for Sale Easier Nuclear Construction Promises Fall Short Kerry: Humanitarian Cease-fire Efforts Continue