Fertile, Minn., educator charged with sex crime with student; attorney says woman is victim
A married teaching aide at Fertile-Beltrami (Minn.) High School charged with criminal sexual conduct with a male student said on Thursday through her attorney that she is the victim in the situation.
Terina Ann Parr, 44, worked as a paraprofessional, an uncertified educator assisting students. Her hiring was approved at the Nov. 13 school board meeting, according to Superintendent Brian Clark and school board minutes.
But “she has lived many years in the community,” said her attorney, Blair Nelson, of Bemidji.
She was arrested March 8, a day after the Polk County Sheriff’s Office received a report from the school “regarding potential inappropriate behavior between a 17-year-old male student and a paraprofessional,” according to a news release from the sheriff’s office.
Parr appeared in state district court in Crookston March 13 on a charge of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.
The charge alleges she was in a position of authority over the student, who was at least 16 but younger than 18, which comes under the state’s definition of fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct.
The maximum sentence is 10 years, but there are several reasons that such a charge could result in a stayed sentence, according to state law.
Polk County Deputy Michael Norland said in a probable cause statement that Deputy Randy Lee spoke to Principal Hillary Horner on March 7, who told him Parr had “behaved inappropriately with a student,” and that there was reportedly a video of some of the behavior.
Deputy Lee said the student told him that Parr kissed him on the lips, then a month later put her hands “inside his pants and touched his privates.”
The student told Lee that in early March he used his cellphone to record a video of himself touching Parr’s breasts “so that he would have proof,” according to the court complaint.
Parr told Lee the student exposed himself to her more than once and took her hand and placed it on his privates and told her everyone would believe him, not her, because “he was just a kid.”
Parr is scheduled to appear in court again Monday for a “Rule 8” hearing, at which a later omnibus hearing will be scheduled when she can formally plead not guilty, Nelson said.
Article written by Stephen J. Lee of the Grand Forks Herald