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Georgia high school math teacher admits sex with 6 students

TERRY DICKSON/MORRIS NEWS SERVICE
Former Charlton County High teacher DaNita Wilson talks with her lawyer John Thigpen as she pleads guilty in Charlton County Superior Court to having sex with six students. Behind her is Senior Assistant District Attorney Alex Markowich.
Tuesday, Feb. 25, 2014 8:19 AM
Last updated Wednesday, Feb. 26, 2014 1:48 AM
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FOLKSTON, Ga. — A former south Georgia high school teacher will serve 10 years in prison followed by 15 years’ probation after she pleaded guilty Monday to having sex with six students.

Former Charlton County High teacher DaNita Wilson talks with her lawyer John Thigpen as she pleads guilty in Charlton County Superior Court to having sex with six students.  TERRY DICKSON/MORRIS NEWS SERVICE
TERRY DICKSON/MORRIS NEWS SERVICE
Former Charlton County High teacher DaNita Wilson talks with her lawyer John Thigpen as she pleads guilty in Charlton County Superior Court to having sex with six students.

As her family sat glumly in the front row of the Charlton County courtroom, some of them crying softly, DaNita Wilson, 33, pleaded guilty to six counts of sexual assault before Superior Court Judge Jeffrey H. Kight.

Kight accepted the plea agreement offered by Senior Assistant District Attorney Alex Markowich and sentenced Wilson to 25 years on each of the six counts, with 15 to be served on probation, and ordered them to be served concurrently.

As a condition of her sentence, Kight ordered her to have no contact with minors except her two young children and, ultimately, her grandchildren should she have any. She must also register as a sex offender upon her release.

Although the age of consent is 16 in Georgia, it is a felony under state law for a teacher to have sex with a student.

Wilson had originally been accused of having sex with seven students, but was indicted on six counts.

She could have received a far longer sentence had she gone to trial and been convicted because one of the students was 15. Sexual assault on a person under 16 carries a sentence of 25 to 50 years.

In exchange for the guilty plea, prosecutors agreed to dismiss the portion of the charge that one of the students was under 16.

“Twenty-five years, and you’re going to serve every day of that,” Markowich said of the way Georgia law treats the crime.

Markowich told Kight the mother of the youngest victim agreed to the lesser charge because she believed 10 years in prison was a sufficient punishment.

The mother also was glad justice would be done, but it was a “sense of justice tempered by mercy,” he told Kight.

Wilson’s lawyer, John Thigpen, told the Times-Union Wilson would have had a lot to overcome at trial because she had made statements shortly after her arrest that amounted to a confession.

“You had her confession and the word of the students,” Thigpen said. “But at least we avoided that 25 years.”

Wilson was arrested in January 2013, released on $35,000 bail and was immediately removed from her job teaching ninth-grade math.

Charlton County schools Superintendent John Lairsey said at the time his office had been investigating allegations against Wilson and contacted the Sheriff’s Office and Georgia Bureau of Investigation.

Wilson answered Kight’s questions softly, looking mostly straight ahead. One of her longest statements was when Kight, in ensuring she understood the proceedings, asked her about her level of education.

Because she was a teacher, Kight said, he assumed she had a degree.

“I have a master’s degree,” Wilson said.

Upon sentencing, Kight remanded her to the custody of the Sheriff’s Office.

Terry Dickson: (912) 264-0405

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my.voice
4811
Points
my.voice 02/25/14 - 09:42 am
5
5
....and ordered them to be

....and ordered them to be served concurrently

Thats funny, did she have sex concurrently?

seenitB4
86957
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seenitB4 02/25/14 - 09:55 am
8
4
What a waste

10 years away from her family....sad deal for all involved.

InChristLove
22473
Points
InChristLove 02/25/14 - 10:31 am
9
3
I guess this proves, having

I guess this proves, having higher education does not necessarily make you a smart person.

What is more troubling than this teacher having sex with young male students is the fact that she's had seven different partners. The shame of this will be carried by her children for a lifetime. Yes it is a sad deal for all involved.

itsanotherday1
42932
Points
itsanotherday1 02/25/14 - 10:34 am
9
8
Personally, I think it is

Personally, I think it is kind of harsh **considering (apparently) it was consensual with boys who would jump at the chance. Losing her teaching credentials, fined, and a long probation would seem more appropriate unless there is more to it than I surmise.

** I remember my and my friend's hormones at that age. We could hardly think of anything else but sex.

bright idea
814
Points
bright idea 02/25/14 - 11:10 am
5
4
Prison time a must

Teachers who do this must serve prison time and not just probation. If not this will become rampant in every schoolhouse. It is bad enough already. One area DA thinks it is not a crime if the student is 16 and the teacher did not directly teach the student.

CobaltGeorge
158360
Points
CobaltGeorge 02/25/14 - 11:32 am
3
7
With This Conduct

happening almost everyday being reported in the News, I guess the next step would be to assign them to the Sex Education classes and make it Legal,....Right?

itsanotherday1
42932
Points
itsanotherday1 02/25/14 - 11:42 am
11
4
Bright

I agree that there must be deterrence; but considering the millions of interactions daily between teachers and students, this doesn't happen very frequently, and never has; even before stricter laws. I remember just one incident of it with a female teacher, and a rumor of it being the reason for a male coach's departure, in my 12 years of school.

Heck, a first offender for armed robbery or aggravated assault could get off with less than she was sentenced.

Not to mention, if indeed it was purely consensual; she likely wasn't the first partner and surely won't be the last. They went home grinning, not emotionally scarred.

GNicole
68
Points
GNicole 02/25/14 - 11:41 am
10
20
It's funny how the comments

It's funny how the comments are SOOO different when the criminal is sans color! She did wrong. She is being punished yet you are concerned about her time spent away from her family. SMH!!!

Red Headed Step Child
4054
Points
Red Headed Step Child 02/25/14 - 12:11 pm
11
3
No amount of hibbity dibbity

No amount of hibbity dibbity is worth ruining your life over! Yeah, most teenage boys are horndogs, but as an "adult" she should be able to manage her own urges appropriately.

Red Headed Step Child
4054
Points
Red Headed Step Child 02/25/14 - 12:14 pm
17
5
@GNicole

Really?? Where does someone's color come into this situation?? Are you implying that if this teacher would have been someone avec color the comments would be different? Wow.

grinder48
1954
Points
grinder48 02/25/14 - 12:23 pm
0
0
@GNicole
Unpublished

Same ol' parnoid chip-on-the-shoulder kind of comment. Your assertion is ridiculous.

grinder48
1954
Points
grinder48 02/25/14 - 12:26 pm
0
0
Where's it say ...
Unpublished

Some comments above seem to indicate she had sex with male students but I didn't read that in the article ...

seenitB4
86957
Points
seenitB4 02/25/14 - 12:50 pm
9
4
Hah--I shake my head too

Amazing to me how many times some bring up color...why I'll never know..if the teacher had been of ANY color my comment would be this...

What a waste

10 years away from her family....sad deal for all involved.

Esp sad for her children--the innocent bystanders,

Darby
25577
Points
Darby 02/25/14 - 01:06 pm
5
2
"Thats funny, did she have sex concurrently?"

That doesn't even make sense.

internationallyunknown
4182
Points
internationallyunknown 02/25/14 - 01:37 pm
6
9
I agree with GNicole....(who

I agree with GNicole....(who knew lol)

BUT I will add: The GENDER of the adult usually plays a part too.

i.e. Scott Dean

internationallyunknown
4182
Points
internationallyunknown 02/25/14 - 01:41 pm
4
6
Picture this

Black male teachers having sex with students instead of white female teachers having sex with students.

Riverman1
83725
Points
Riverman1 02/25/14 - 01:42 pm
4
7
Hey, we all have memories of

Hey, we all have memories of a teacher we knew who was like that.

Just My Opinion
5617
Points
Just My Opinion 02/25/14 - 01:54 pm
9
5
"...when the criminal is sans

"...when the criminal is sans color!"
Last time I looked in a Crayola crayon box, white IS a color!

Look G, if you're going to make a racist comment, at least make it a good one! I feel that my reaction to your post is a complete waste of my time, but oh well. Guess I'm just trying to edumacate you!

jmo
15968
Points
jmo 02/25/14 - 03:18 pm
6
7
I wish.....

She had been my 9th grade teacher. lol

internationallyunknown
4182
Points
internationallyunknown 02/25/14 - 03:32 pm
9
4
Misconception...now that's funny

"Look G, if you're going to make a racist comment, at least make it a good one!"

The comment wasn't racist.

dwb619
93396
Points
dwb619 02/25/14 - 03:44 pm
4
4
60's

In the 60's the boys just enjoyed the one on one "tutoring' and tried to keep as quiet as hormone enraged teenagers could.

InChristLove
22473
Points
InChristLove 02/25/14 - 03:45 pm
8
5
"It's funny how the comments

"It's funny how the comments are SOOO different when the criminal is sans color! "

Definition of "sans" means without, so reading the statment againt in proper context it is referring to the comments being so different when the criminal is white. Yes Internationallyunknow, it was a racist comment, albeit not a very good one.

Farful
7
Points
Farful 02/25/14 - 04:59 pm
5
6
not a bad looking math

not a bad looking math teacher

Graymare
3193
Points
Graymare 02/25/14 - 06:01 pm
5
1
Why no "put her under the

Why no "put her under the jail comments" which are usually made when a man is convicted?

blah_blah72
7
Points
blah_blah72 02/25/14 - 06:05 pm
5
8
Not enough time.....

If I can recall, there was a school secretary in Georgia who had sex with ONE student and is serving 18 years (and yes she was BLACK). So I don't care what no one says, race has something to do with the amount of time this woman received. 10 years??? Please!!!!

corgimom
32231
Points
corgimom 02/25/14 - 06:06 pm
5
6
She is a sick, predatory

She is a sick, predatory child molesting pedophile, and 10 years is not enough. She should be locked up for life.

She WILL do this again.

The Mick
827
Points
The Mick 02/25/14 - 07:06 pm
6
1
I feel bad for her kids who

I feel bad for her kids who probably attend that school system. It is a terrible double standard that many think this woman deserves mercy compared to a man with the same charge. However, I doubt any of the boys are scarred for life. I would not have been at that age

nocnoc
42470
Points
nocnoc 02/25/14 - 07:18 pm
7
0
Ok I'll say it !

The story obviously fails to state the obvious in this day and age of Liberalism. Since the PC omission seems to have been applied, one must ask the sexes of the students?

So I dug around.
"Investigators say Wilson engaged in sexual relationships with at least six 16-year-old male students and one 15-year-old male student. "

InChristLove
22473
Points
InChristLove 02/25/14 - 07:22 pm
5
0
blah_blah72, could you post a

blah_blah72, could you post a link to verify your information. Only thing I could find was a former secretary in Haines City for Landmark Christian High School pleaded guilty Tuesday to having sex with a 17-year-old boy who attended the school.

Instead of going to trial she pled guilty to three counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor. Her lowest sentence could be about 17 years in prison and the maximum of 45 years.

(And she was WHITE)

Sweet son
10372
Points
Sweet son 02/25/14 - 07:47 pm
4
1
I too wondered about GNicole's comment. Not called for!

Glad the rest of you addressed it!

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