Jill Arthur has been identified as the 29-year-old teacher at Bixby High School in Oklahoma that was arrested and charged for allegedly kissing an underage student.
According to the court affidavit, Arthur and the unidentified student allegedly communicated through social media and text messages before eventually meeting up.
Authorities with the Bixby Police Department say that they first received a tip about Arthur’s illicit relationship on January 7, 2018.
Police say that Arthur and the victim went to a movie at the Warren Theater in Broken Arrow on December 26, 2018.
Both the victim and Arthur said that they only kissed and that nothing sexual happened. The student is allegedly 18-years-old, according to court records.
Following her arrest on Thursday, February 1, Arthur was booked into the Tulsa County Jail and charged with sexual battery.
Since the beginning of 2019 alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teacher Meredith Null was arrested on similar charges.
As for why there has been an increase in teacher’s being charged with sex-related crimes over recent years, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.
According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.
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