CEDAR HILL (CBSDFW.COM) - A teacher in the Cedar Hill Independent School District has been arrested for allegedly having a sexual relationship with two students.
Teacher Marlena Mints is charged with one count of Aggravated Sexual Assault of a Child and two counts of Improper Relationship With Students, which are all felonies. Mints is a health teacher and coach at Bessie Coleman Middle School.
The Cedar Hill ISD placed Mints on administrative leave last week after learning of her alleged inappropriate conduct with one of her students. A fellow coach told police that an eighth grader was reportedly bragging about his sexual relationship with Mints. The school district contacted Cedar Hill police.
According to the arrest warrant, Mints exchanged text messages with the 13 year old about a problem he told her he was having with his penis. The student says Mints told him she would need to see it and asked him to meet her at school to show it to her. The student told investigators he thought it would be okay because she was his sex education and health teacher. He says when he exposed himself to her, she performed oral sex on him. The student also referred to Mints as a "cougar" who "likes younger men" and claims that as one Mints "favorite students," he was allowed to touch her breasts and buttocks while spending time in her classroom. He says other students were allowed to do the same.
During the investigation, the name of another student, a high school senior, was mentioned to detectives as another possible victim. Police say the second victim exchanged messages with Mint, over a smart phone app called Kik, in which she asked if he wanted to "hang out" and if he liked "white girls." According to the arrest warrant, Mints picked up him and drove him to her home where she also performed oral sex on him. Police say his cell phone contained evidence of the messages he exchanged with Mints.
A next door neighbor, who did not want to be identified, told CBS11 officers recently questioned her about any suspicious activity in the home. She said, she had previously called police to report loud music and teenagers fighting in the backyard.
Mints has been with the Cedar Hill ISD since 2006. Administrators there confirmed that the 31-year-old had passed all background checks before being hired and has had no incidents since joining the district.
Last week, parents with children attending Bessie Coleman received letters notifying them of the alleged "inappropriate conduct of a teacher" and were encouraged to talk to their children.
"I'm very disappointed and very surprised,' said Maggie Roberts, whose niece attends the school. "That's not who I was expecting… She's a great teacher. Always friendly, smiling, willing to help."
Eighth grader Lidia Vizueta described Mints as a coach who encouraged her students and often made them laugh.
"It makes me feel sad a little 'cause she was a really great coach," she said.
Mints remains in the DeSoto Regional Jail. Officials with Cedar Hill ISD say they are cooperating with police, who are continuing the investigation.
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