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Danville teacher faces sex charges - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Danville teacher faces sex charges

Burlington, Vermont - January 30, 2012

A Vermont teacher was in court Monday -- accused of having sex with a student at school multiple times.

From the classroom to the courtroom. Twenty-three year old Abby Shocik's career as the band teacher at the Danville School lasted just three months.

"It's very concerning that it happened at all, but the fact it happened on school grounds allegedly, before school started is very concerning," said Caledonia County State's Attorney, Lisa Warren.

Prosecutors allege the South Burlington woman and a 15-year-old male student would meet at school at 7 a.m. to have sex, either in a closet in the band room or a room near the auditorium.

"They both knew each other through the school setting, liked each other through relationship of teacher and student and the comfort level developed and from that comfort level more ensued," Warren said.

According to court papers, the two became close when the student told Shocik he was suicidal. The two then reportedly sent numerous online messages back and forth. That led to discussions about sexual positions and in one of them, Shocik allegedly admitted that having sex with the student was wrong. A concerned citizen discovered the messages on Facebook and alerted authorities.  

School superintendent Martha Tucker says Shocik is no longer the band teacher at the school and issued the following statement: "This is ultimately not about the Danville School, its administration nor its students. It is about the bad actions of one individual..."

"This is very rare, at any given time we have over 8-thousand teachers working in Vermont schools and this happens one time a year on average," said Jill Remick, Vermont Education Department spokesperson.

The Education Department says in these rare cases, it's pretty much a split between male and female teachers who offend. "In the female teachers it tends to be the teachers who are younger," Remick said.

Shocik pleaded not guilty to five counts of sexual assault on a minor. If convicted of the charges, each one carries up to 20 years in prison. The judge set bail in the case at 10-thousand dollars.

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