Sexual assault charges against a former high school teacher in Missouri were dropped after she and the student got married.
Baylee Turner was charged in February 2019 with having sexual intercourse with one of her male students during her first year of teaching English at Sarcoxie High School following an investigation by the Jasper County Sheriff’s Department
In January of that year, when she was 23-years-old, Turner allegedly admitted to police that she and the student had sex in her home in January 2019, the Joplin Globe reported.
Last month, the charges against Turner were dismissed after she and the unnamed student tied the knot.
The marriage impacted the case’s moving forward, according to Nate Dalley, an assistant prosecutor in the case.
Turner’s new marital status means that marital or spousal privilege now applies to the case, which means that the student would not be able to testify against her, according to Dalley.
Because of this, the state would have an incredibly difficult time proving its case in court.
It’s unclear when Turner and the student got married. Court documents do not reveal the age of the student, and the two have since moved out of Missouri.
Turner had resigned from Sarcoxie High School after her February 2019 arrest, and subsequently surrendered her Missouri state teaching license.
She had taught at the district’s middle school for two years before moving up to work at the high school.
The probable-cause affidavit filed in the case did not provide the student’s age.
In Missouri, sexual contact with a student by a school district employee, volunteer or official, either elected or appointed, regardless of whether the student is a minor or of age, is prohibited by law.
Turner is one of six young educators in Southwest Missouri to be accused in recent years of having sexual relations with a student, according to the Joplin Globe.
(Pictures: Jasper County Sheriff Dpt/Facebook/Google)