Alexandra McLean tops list of five notorious teacher-student sex crimes
Shocking? Sure, but not all that surprising. The last year has included an unfair share of local reports involving sexual misconduct allegations against area educators (and janitors). Here are five notorious examples.
5. Alexandra McLean
In addition to her Shmuck recognition, McLean has earned criminal charges for two counts of sexual assault by a person in a position of trust. The 27-year-old was arrested after police received a a report from a 29-year-old woman, who alleged that her younger sister was friends with a student who told her of his sexcapades with McLean. Afterward, the seventeen-year-old boy told his story to police: He says he and McLean had sex in her car after rehearsal on a date estimated to be either November 15 or 16. McLean no longer works at Englewood High School.
4. Courtney Bowles
Visits to the parking lot are not uncommon: In January 2011, former Mountain View High School instructor Courtney Bowles and a sixteen-year-old student were discovered naked together inside a car -- along with bottles of Sprite and vodka. The 31-year-old Fort Collins resident was arrested for three class 4 felony sexual assault charges, contributing to the delinquency of a minor and sexual assault on a child in a position of trust, but she did not serve jail time. According to Bowles's plea bargain, she is serving ten years of intensive sex offender probation and has registered as a sex offender.
3. Oscar Ponce
In December, the cross country coach at Abraham Lincoln High School was formally charged with sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust and sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust-pattern of abuse after allegedly sexually assaulting a teenage student at his school "on numerous occasions between December 2010 and May 2011." Because of his rising star profile in Denver Public Schools, many residents and educators were particularly shocked to hear the news. In a section of the DPS' website titled In the Spotlight, Ponce earned this praise: "Thank you, Mr. Ponce for the passion and dedication you bring to your students and athletes."
2. Zachary Meints
Although he was a volunteer, Meints worked as a youth coach for the Boulder Hockey Club with teens normally aged between sixteen and eighteen for a few years before he was charged with a crime. Allegations against him come from as far back as 2009, but Meints was arrested in December for five counts of Internet sexual exploitation of a child. The trickiest part: One memo uncovered by 9News indicates that six Boulder Hockey Club officials were aware of accusations against Meints since at least early October but opted to stay silent.
1. Terah Rawlings
Rawlings, a teacher at Colorado Springs' Hilltop Baptist School, was indicted in November on four counts of sexual assault on a child by one in a position of trust, four counts alleging a pattern of the same crime and one count of promoting obscenity after she was alleged to have had an ongoing sexual relationship with a fifteen-year-old student during the 2007-2008 school year. But she wasn't the only person charged with a crime as a result of the incident: The 32-year-old's uncle, Hilltop pastor Franklin Knight, her father, former school athletic director and associate pastor Raymond Knight, and ex-principal Jan Ocvirk were also charged with failing to comply with a state law because officials believe they knew about the relationship but did not report it. According to the Colorado Springs Gazette, two of Franklin Knight's subordinates later filed a lawsuit against him accusing the pastor of firing them after they attempted to report the relationship to him.
More from our Colorado Crimes archive: "Jerod Reeves admits to sawing fingers off dead shooter in murder-suicide to get gun."