Jennifer Fitcher was convicted of having sex with several students, and as the 30-year-old teacher was sentenced to 22 years in prison, she came under attack from parents of the victims.
Fitcher was sentenced in a Lakeland, Florida, court this week, where the judge called her a predator and families said she ruined their children’s lives.
Fitcher was first accused of having a sexual relationship with an eighth grader back in 2008, causing her to resign from that school district. Three years later, she was hired by Central Florida Aerospace Academy, and prosecutors said it took her just one month before having other sexual relationships with students, including an ongoing relationship with a 17-year-old student.
At her sentencing on Friday, Jennifer Fitcher apologized for her acts and said she regretted her acts.
“I wish I could take it back, and my words are not going to suffice I know that,” said Fichter, via CBS News.
While Fitcher and family members pleaded for mercy from the court, the families of victims said her actions were disastrous.
“It hurts,” said one mother at this week’s sentencing, “I saw myself losing my son before my very eyes and there was nothing I could do to reach him.”
She was accused of meeting students at parties and her own apartment for sex. Fitcher was also accused of lying to victims’ parents and instructing the victims to lie as well.
Prosecutors said Fitcher had an ongoing relationship with one of the boys starting in November 2013. The victim told police that Fitcher groped him in a classroom, and later met for sex in her pickup truck.
“We got there, and I got in her truck,” the victim said, according to police. “We talked a little bit, we kissed a little bit, and then she said, ‘Let’s get in the back,’ so we got in the back. She started taking her clothes off, then we took mine off. Then she started, like, messing with me.”
Police said the Florida teacher had sex with the victim between 20 and 30 times, including at least once inside the school, and at one point became pregnant. She later aborted the pregnancy, the Tampa Tribune reported.
She had been arrested in April 2014 when a parent came across an incriminating text message and alerted police. She pleaded guilty in April of this year to 37 counts.
Jennifer Fitcher was sentenced to 22 years in prison.
[Image via YouTube]