Thursday, September 3, 2009

NC teacher charged with 9 counts for sexual relationship with student - sentenced to 45 days jail, 3 years probation

(Original Post 6-10-08)
Shebana Rajput of Kinston, NC, a Jones High School teacher, was charged with 8 counts of sexual activity with a student and a single count of sex offense with a 17 year old student. She is being held on $100,000 bond in the Lenoir County Jail.

According to a news release, Lenoir County Sheriff's investigators were contacted May 23 by Jones County authorities regarding an investigation of sexual assault by a teacher with a 17-year-old student, who attended Jones Senior High. The incidents took place at Rajput's home, the news release said, which is why Lenoir County authorities got involved.

According to officials, all incidents occured between March and May. Rajput was arrested at her home. Sex between teachers and students, regardless of age, in North Carolina is a felony.

(Update 9-3-09) Rajput pled no contest to having sex with the victim at least 9 times Monday, August 31. Sentencing is set for September 28. The student attended Jones Senior High School, and was hired to clean the gutters of her home, which were only accessible thruogh Rajput's bedroom. When inside, Rajput lured the victim onto the bed, saying that he owed her something. During later sexual encounters, rajput bought the student a car and other expensive gifts, among other things. She resigned in May of last year.

(Update 10-28-09) Rajput was sentenced to 45 days in jail, 3 years probation and a $10,000 fine by the Lenoir County Superior Court yesterday on nine felony charges. According to Lead investigator Detective Christy Smith, “This was the first time the defendant had been charged with a felony. The victim in this case was not underage, but the fact that he was a student of Rajput’s makes it a felony.” The now 19 year old victim is currently undergoing counseling.

The boy and his parents filed a federal lawsuit Monday.

The lawsuit says the 17-year-old boy suffered severe physical, mental and emotional trauma after being "sexually exploited, assaulted and abused" by Shebana Rajput.

The suit says the science teacher made sexually provocative contact with the student on school property, both during and after school hours. It says the sex began in March 2008, with Rajput providing alcohol, gifts, money and a cell phone to the 17-year old.

It claims the teacher purchased the student a car and even promised to marry him. The lawsuit says the boy was ridiculed by a former coach, who blamed him for the teacher's arrest.

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