Laura Amero, the former Superintendent of Windham Exempted Village Schools, has been charged with allegedly having sexual contact with a teenage student.
According to reports, the 35-year-old Amero was arrested and charged on Monday, April 22, for allegedly having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old Windham Junior-Senior High School student.
Additionally, Amero is accused of trying to have a sexual relationship with a separate 17-year-old student and threatening the students to keep them from speaking out.
Police say the relationship with the then 16-year-old student allegedly happened between February and May 2017, while the other relationship with the then 17-year-old student allegedly happened between September 2015 and May 2016.
Due to the fact that both of the victims were minors at the time of the alleged sexual relationship, neither have been identified.
Following her arrest, Amero has since been charged with two third-degree felony counts of sexual battery and two fourth-degree felony counts of attempted sexual battery.
Amero, who was placed on administrative leave by the Windham Exempted Village School District earlier in April, has pleaded guilty to all the charges against her.
Amero is just one of many education officials to be arrested and charged for sex-related crimes in recent years.
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 teachers Meredith Null and Edna Longoria were arrested on similar charges.
As for why the number of these incidents has seemingly increased, 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.