According to the Journal Star, a former Morton High School teacher has been charged with sexual abuse of a student.
Erin Kemp, 38-years-old, was charged with two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse. Kemp admitted to police to having an “inappropriate relationship” with a student for about a month. Kemp said she had inappropriately touched and kissed the student, under 18-years-old, but denies claims of sexual touching.
However, the student claims there was sexual contact. When investigators conducted a forensic download of his cellphone, numerous texts showed Kemp told the student she loved him.
Following her confession of an inappropriate relationship with the student, Kemp resigned from her position at Morton High School as a business teacher. Kemp faces between probation and seven-year in probation if convicted.
Attorney contributor Brian Kent, an experienced sexual abuse lawyer, has worked with numerous sexual abuse cases in civil lawsuits. Below we asked Brian to provide insight into victims’ legal rights that have been sexually abused by a teacher.
"Schools have a legal obligation to protect and provide a safe environment to all their students. Sadly, we have seen across the country; predators are seen working in the schools as teachers, coaches, or other staff to get close to students. To ensure the safety of students, schools must Implement adequate safety measures. Adequate safety measures include cameras, guards, easy reporting systems, and background checks. If schools do not provide adequate security, they may be considered liable for any sexual assaults that occur by employees."
"The first step victims of sexual assault should take to secure the services of an experienced sexual abuse lawyer. The victim should ask if the school did everything possible to prevent the abuse from happening. If the school did not provide adequate security and did their best to prevent abuse, they may be considered negligent in any crimes or misconduct that occurs. An example of negligence is if a teacher was reported for sexual misconduct, but the school allowed the teacher to continue working. In such cases, victims and their families should know they may have grounds for a civil lawsuit against the school and receive compensation for damages."