Alecia Dotson is a teacher’s aide at Highland Groves Elementary School in Lakeland, Florida. July 1, she appeared before a judge in Bartow facing charges of having an inappropriate relationship with one of her former students. The student in question was just 11-years-old and recently completed the 5th Grade class Dotson helped in.
Sgt. Gary Gross of the Lakeland Police Department spoke with Fox 13 about how Dotson found herself wanting to engage in a relationship with one of the students in the class.
“She said it went from mentor to a crush to wanting to have a relationship.”
Officer Gross went on to mention that Dotson had even developed a pet name for the young boy, “Lovebug.” She had began texting the boy. The texts gradually became more sexual in nature. It was to a point where Dotson was exchanging hundreds of texts over the previous three week period. One of the text in question read, “Love bug what are you doing… I’ll be sure to tell her we won’t have sex on the first visit…LOL.” Gross elaborated on the situation.
“When does it go from inappropriate to criminal? It jumped real quickly when she said let’s meet at the mall for some specific sexual acts. Not only that, she made a stop at a store and picked up a product to be used during that encounter.”
The product in question was a strawberry warming lubricant according to the Orlando Sentinel. Fortunately for the young boy involved, the encounter in question never took place. The boy’s mother found the text messages on her son’s phone. She notified authorities who then arrested Dotson in a sting operation. Sgt. Gross was quick to point out that the mother did exactly what a parent was supposed to do in a situation like this.
“If his mother wasn’t doing her job as a parent, this child would have been victimized by his teacher.”
This case is particularly disturbing because Alecia Dotson, 45, had never been disciplined in any way by the school district. She had no police record. She has since been suspended without pay. The superintendent of the district has made a recommendation to the school board that she be fired.
Alecia Dotson is one of the growing number of cases where adults in an education system use their influence to prey on unsuspecting children. What punishment do you feel Dotson deserves in this case?
[Photo by Lakeland Police Department]