Female Sex Offenders: Double Standard?

Are all sex offenders treated the same? Does the public take the cases as seriously when the offender or alleged offender is a woman? Many people are asking those questions after several highly-publicized scandals involving female teachers and male students.

As Susan Koeppen observed on The Early Show Thursday, the majority of sex offenders are men, but it's the women who get a lot of the attention.

When a beautiful teacher seduces a student, some people think, "What's the harm?"

But Koeppen spoke with one student who says his "affair" with a teacher left him devastated.

"I'm still trying to battle back," Jason Eickmeyer told Koeppen. "This happened in 2003, and it's 2006, and I still can't get it out of my mind."

At 15, reports Koeppen, Eickmeyer was a champion wrestler, with dreams of going to a Division I school. But he says all that changed his sophomore year at Hammonton High in Hammonton, N.J., when, he says, he caught the eye of 26-year-old gym teacher, Traci Tapp.

"She asked me my name," Jason says, "and I said, 'Jason Eickmeyer,' and she said, 'Oh, so the rumors are true.' And I said, 'What rumors?' And she said that she thought I was pretty cute.

"It kinda fired me up a little bit, being 15 years old, that's what you wanna hear from a beautiful teacher like that."

Jason says their relationship quickly escalated from hallway flirtation to a sexual encounter at the teacher's home. Jason says he was in love.

"Our dreams were to be together forever and produce the blonde hair, blue-eyed children," he says.

He says he began skipping classes to be with Tapp, and she told him to keep their affair a secret.

But it didn't stay that way for long.

"People always saw me together with her, every day," he tells Koeppen.

Jason says teachers as well as students knew about the relationship, but no one stepped in.

When Jason finally told his mother about the relationship, she reported it to his guidance counselor, who immediately called police.

"It hurt. I mean, he's my baby, he is my youngest son," says Tina Eickmeyer.

Two years after the alleged affair began, Tapp was arrested.

Tina says she's "disgusted" that nobody stepped in to stop the relationship before it was brought to her attention.
  • Brian Dakss

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