Student-teacher sex scandals were widely reported in 2013. In some cases, convictions brought closure to victims after years of investigation. In others, the suspects' technological footprints aided law enforcement and paved the way for relatively swift justice.
But no matter how long the investigation took, or whether the suspect pleaded out or stood trial, the thing that unites these stories is a violation of the fundamental trust between educator and student.
Although some of these cases are still being prosecuted, there are potential victims at the center of each of them. Young lives have been forever changed because a supposedly responsible adult crossed a line that should never be crossed.
Here are the 10 most notorious teacher-student sex scandals of 2013.
Newport News, Va., English teacher Cara Alexander
, 27, was arrested following an investigation that began after parents of her 17-year-old victim found nude photos of the teacher on his phone. According to documents obtained by WTKR, Alexander initiated contact with the student by giving him her cell phone number. Alexander faces 13 felony counts in the case.
, 34, who taught sixth grade at a Simi Valley, Calif., school, was charged with committing lewd acts on a child and genital penetration by a foreign object. She was accused of carrying on a sexual affair with a 14-year-old boy in June. Brooks eventually plead guilty, calling the acts a "manic episode." She was sentenced to six years in prison
, a 34-year-old English teacher at a Utah high school, was arrested in October after an investigation revealed that she allegedly had a sexual relationship with a student. The victim, who was 15 when the illicit affair began, was able to accurately describe tattoos on Altice's body to police.
A student who had Altice told KUTV that the teacher "always wanted to be liked."
Altice was placed on paid administrative leave.
In August, Rachelle Gendron
, a sexual education teacher at a Fitchburg, Mass., high school, was indicted on charges including five counts of rape aggravated by age difference. Investigators allegedly found sexually explicit text messages and photos of the teacher "in various states of undress with genitals and breasts exposed" on a cell phone belonging to a 14-year-old boy, whom she is accused of having sex with at least 5 times. Gendron pleaded not guilty to the charges, but has been fired by the school.
, a former teacher at an elite Virginia prep school, was sentenced to 43 years in prison in October for sexually molesting five female students in the 1960s. The girls, adults now, were between 12 and 14 at the time of the incidents. Famed attorney Gloria Allred, who represented the victims, called Kloman “an unmitigated predator.” According to WJLA, the victims had another name for him
: "The Wolf."
Tonya Flink, who was a computer teacher at at a Haltom City, Texas, high school, was accused of having sex with several students. The 40-year-old pleaded guilty to two counts of improper relationship with a student, but was able to sidestep more serious charges after she married one of her supposed victims
, and another refused to cooperate. Two victims who were cooperative told investigators that Flink had said she liked "young Hispanic kids," and that she was in love with one victim.
In October, David Ellis Edwards
, a former middle school principal in North Carolina, was accused of sexually assaulting a student in his office while the boy's unsuspecting parent was outside the room. Authorities said that Edwards, 49, molested at least three boys between the ages of 11 and 14 from 2009 to 2011. Police think there may have been even more victims.
Laura Elizabeth Whitehurst
, 28, was arrested in July, two weeks after she gave birth to a baby that she conceived with a 16-year-old student. After the allegations were reported, two additional students, now adults, came forward and claimed they had sex with Whitehurst. In August, the teacher pleaded guilty to having sex with three different students
and was sentenced to a year in county jail, and five years' probation.
In 1997, karate instructor Robert Earle Keith
was found guilty of sexually assaulting a male student. More than 16 years later, and hundreds of miles from the past incident, Keith, now 61, was again arrested, after three victims at his new dojo accused him of sex crimes. Kalamazoo Township police said that Keith forced the boys -- 15-, 16- and 17-years-old -- to perform sex acts, telling the teens they had to "join a secret society" and "please [their] master" in order to get their black belts.
Southern California special education teacher Summer Michelle Hansen
faced 16 felony counts after being charged with sex crimes against five underage students in August. According to Corona, Calif., police, one of Hansen's victims told a detective that the teacher had sent him "inappropriate text messages suggesting sexual contact" that culminated in the teacher offering him sex as a prize for doing well in a baseball game. Hansen pleaded not guilty
to the charges in September.