Alexandria Vera, the 24-year-old school teacher accused of having a sexual relationship with one of her underage students was sentenced to 10 years in prison on Friday, Click2Houston reported. Vera pleaded guilty to aggravated sexual assault of a child in November, and faced a maximum of 30 years in prison. However, she was given a relatively lighter sentence due to the complex dynamics of the case – including the fact that the victim’s family was aware of the nature of the relationship between them. Vera would be eligible for parole at the end of five years.
Announcing the judgment, State District Judge Michael McSpadden said the verdict would send a much-needed message to the community. He went on to add that he does not see Alexandria Vera as a danger to other children.
“We want our educators to teach our students. We want them to keep their hands off the students,” the judge said.
Earlier, prosecutors also alleged that there were a “string of deceptive moves” on part of Vera to make the rest of the world believe that she was, in fact, dating the father of the boy.
— NY Daily News Video (@NYDNVideo) January 13, 2017
Alexandria Vera was arrested last year by officers from the Child Protective Services who were notified of a “possible sexual relationship” between her and an underage teen. Following investigations, it was found that Vera had been impregnated by the 13-year-old boy and that she even had an abortion. What was more shocking was the revelation that the boys family members were aware of what was happening. Vera’s young daughter aged six was also aware of the relationship and reportedly called the 13-year-old boy “dad.” After her arrest and subsequent interrogation, Alexandria admitted to having sexual relations with the 13-year-old teenager. Prosecutors allege that Vera had sex at least two times with her eighth-grade student, who was 13 at the time during the period starting between Sept. 30, 2015, and Jan. 30, 2016. In her confession to investigating authorities, Vera revealed how she ended up having sex with the teen.
Alexandria Vera worked at the Stovall Middle School as a teacher where she met the student in a summer school session. She was approached by the boy on her Instagram following which they started to chat regularly. After the duo got their numbers exchanged, the teenager reportedly asked if he could hang out with her – to which Vera readily agreed. The very next day, sometime in the month of September 2015, the duo ended up having sex at the boy’s home. After the duo had started “seeing” each other, she was also introduced to his family members as his girlfriend. The family seemingly had no issues accepting the much elder Vera as his girlfriend. She told an investigating officer that the boy’s parents were accepting of their relationship and that she was invited to family gatherings. They also allowed the teen to often spend the night at Vera’s home where the duo regularly had sex. In fact, it became a routine of sorts and she would drop him home every morning just in time to catch his school bus to Stovall Middle School.
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As the relationship grew, the duo continued to have sex and spend time together. In January 2016, Vera reportedly got pregnant with the student’s baby. Again, the teenager’s family was told about the same. The family was supportive of what had happened and were excited about the baby. However, after Child Protective Services were notified about what was happening, Alexandria reportedly became nervous and decided to go ahead with abortion to end the pregnancy. When she was initially questioned by officials, she denied having any such relationship with the boy. However, after intense interrogation, Vera admitted having been involved in a sexual relationship with an underage teenager. A forensic analysis of Vera’s phone also revealed several messages between the two with enough proof to confirm the nature of the relationship between the two.
Following this, Vera was arrested and charged with continuous sexual abuse of a child. However, she entered a guilty plea that enabled her to be charged with a lesser charge of aggravated sexual assault of a child with a possible 30 year jail term. She was later released on a $100,000 bail. Alexandria Vera was ordered to stop all contact with the boy and was also warned to stay away from the Internet.
In Vera’s defense, her attorney Ricardo Rodriguez presented only one witness who happened to be a therapist who had profiled Vera’s mental state. The therapist claimed that Vera had a history of having witnessed domestic violence situations as she grew up, and was in search for a deep need of love which could have prompted her to have a relationship with the boy who adored her.
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