A former middle school teacher was charged with sexually assaulting two students last week after allegedly grooming them while she was their math teacher, according to a probable cause complaint obtained by PEOPLE.
Samantha McFerrin, 29, was charged with a first-degree felony of aggravated sexual assault of a child and a second-degree felony of sexual assault of a child. She immediately posted a $70,000 bond and was issued an ankle monitor, her attorney confirmed to PEOPLE.
On Feb. 11, according to the complaint, investigators were contacted about an inappropriate relationship between a teacher at Space Center Intermediate School and a former student who had since moved on to high school.
During the investigation, the high school student told deputies “at first he didn’t like the Defendant, but then he decided to be nice to her so that he could sit with his friends behind her desk,” the complaint states.
Eventually, the teacher asked for the student’s Snapchat name and allegedly began communicating with him there, the complaint continues.
In August 2018, when the student was in 9th grade, McFerrin allegedly “…began messaging him telling him that she missed him,” according to the complaint. “He stated that this was how they began seeing each other outside of school.”
According to the court document, the teacher allegedly had sex with the student at least 15 times.
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During the investigation, another student was identified as allegedly having nude photographs on his phone, the complaint stated.
In November 2019, the student — who was 13 years old — went to the teacher’s classroom, where nothing inappropriate happened, he told investigators. But she allegedly sent him a text afterward telling him, “next time we should kiss.”
The superintendent of Clear Creek Independent School District sent a message to parents encouraging other children to come forward with any information.
“We believe current and former students of Ms. McFerrin’s may have information related to the law enforcement investigation,” Superintendent Greg Smith wrote to parents, according to local TV station KTRK.
The station reported McFerrin resigned during the initial interview and had worked at the school since 2016.
Harris County Assistant District Attorney Preston Burns said it’s important to listen to children if they share a story of sexual abuse, and report it to authorities.
“In cases like these, it affects the kids, the families – it ripples out,” Burns tells PEOPLE. “It stays with a kid and they grow up having this experience and it isn’t right.”
McFerrin’s attorney Chris Tritico said he couldn’t discuss his client’s case because he was still waiting for information, but confirmed she entered a plea of not guilty.
“She’s looking forward to a fair and impartial trial for a jury to weigh the evidence and look at it with impartial eyes,” he says.
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