[Warning: Potentially Triggering Content]
A New Jersey-based art teacher has been arrested for allegedly having a sexual relationship with a high school student, who was a minor at that time.
On Friday, the Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office announced in a press release that Christine Knudsen, who taught at Fair Lawn High School, had been arrested the day before after an extensive investigation into disturbing allegations against her was completed. The police report alleged that the graphic arts educator had engaged in sexual activity with a student “at the school where she is employed.”
In the statement, police revealed their belief that the 44-year-old was “providing and ingesting controlled dangerous substances” with the young teenager at the time of the alleged abuse. That said, authorities did not reveal what specific drug use was suspected.
No information on the alleged victim has been released either, such as their age or gender, but given the charges Knudsen faces, it is believed the student was between the ages of 16 and 17 at the time of the alleged crimes, confirming their status as a minor. While the high school’s principal, Paul Gorski, has yet to make a public statement on the arrest, Fair Lawn Public Schools Superintendent Nick Norcia shared that the incident in question actually “allegedly occurred several years ago.”
In a letter to the community, and especially those with kids enrolled in the public school system, Norcia explained the legal troubles and attempted to reassure parents that their children remain safe at school. The letter, which was obtained by People, reads:
“We do not understand there to be any allegations of current misconduct, and law enforcement has made clear that it does not consider any current students at risk of harm, in any way.”
Well, that is certainly a good thing.
Norcia also reassured worried guardians that the school remains committed to the pursuit of justice for any such crimes, adding:
“As with all matters involving law enforcement, our school district has and will continue to fully cooperate.”
Christine currently faces three charges — one count of second-degree sexual assault against a victim between the ages of 16 and 17, one count of second-degree endangering the welfare of a child in a sexual manner, and one count of second-degree endangering the welfare of a child through non-sexual abuse. She is being held in Bergen County Jail without bond, according to online prison records.
[Image via Bergen County Prosecutor’s Office]
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