Friday, October 2, 2009

Female sex offender returns to teaching at all-boys school

Mary Ems, photo by Malinda Hartong of the Cincinnati Enquirer.

Hmm, would they permit a male sex offender to teach at an all-girl Christian school? Well, they might, now that I think of it. (After this long week of nonstop Polanski-defenses, I guess anything is possible.)

What concerns me is that the student was 18, and isn't that legally an adult? But they charged her anyway:

Ems originally was arrested for sexual battery, a felony that requires convicts to register as sex offenders.

But because the student refused to cooperate with officials, prosecutors struck a plea deal to ensure a conviction. They allowed Ems to plead guilty to unlawful sexual conduct with a minor – even though the victim was 18 – in exchange for her surrendering her teaching license. Ems benefited from the plea deal because the misdemeanor conviction means she isn’t a convicted felon and she doesn’t have to register as a sex offender.
Not sure how I feel about that. The following story says "pleaded guilty to sex with a minor"--without properly disclosing that he was in fact 18 years old.

Female sex offender returns to teaching at all-boys school
By Kimball Perry • Cincinnati Enquirer • October 1, 2009

An all-boys Christian school is employing a teacher who was fired from a previous teaching job for having sex with a student and who pleaded guilty last month to a sex crime with a minor.

Mary Ems, 44, of Springfield Township, is working at the Union Christian Post Graduate Academy, an uncertified school for males at least age 17.
[Hamilton County's] plea deal also required Ems to give up her certificate to teach in Ohio.

Despite that, Ems is working as a teacher at the all-boys school.

"We will certainly bring that to the court's attention at the time of sentencing," said Julie Wilson, spokesman for the Hamilton County Prosecutor.

"We wanted to make sure she didn't have her teaching certificate because of that (conviction)."

The school is not certified by the Ohio Department of Education because it accepts students who are college age and isn't a public high school.

The school identifies itself on its Web site as having "outstanding faculty and staff, prides itself in developing young men into 'Champions in Christ.'"

The Web site doesn't list a street address for the school, noting only that it is "located in suburban Cincinnati."

"The Union Christian Academy staff believes that its primary purpose is to educate each student to the highest possible level of academic achievement by providing a challenging curriculum in a safe, Christian environment," its Web site notes.

It requires each student to have "personal and institutional accountability, which is characterized by honesty, openness, spiritual and shared ethical standards" and that students "will be taught that making sound choices now will positively impact their future."

It appears to be a boarding school where students can go to improve their grades or athletic abilities - perhaps in hope of earning a college athletic scholarship - before attending college. Its tuition is $4,500 from January through May. Its first day of school this year was Sept. 9.

"Union Christian's Postgraduate football program is a very successful option for most young men. Our goal is to send numerous Postgraduate players to the ranks of many college programs every year," its Web site notes.

The school's Web site is registered to Wilson and a company named Ultimate Preps, both in Missouri City, Texas. Wilson also didn't respond to e-mails.

Ems is to be sentenced Oct. 29 before Hamilton County Common Pleas Court Judge Melba Marsh. She faces up to six months in jail but the judge indicated she'd impose probation
No address on the website? Sounds like one of those boot-camp type boarding schools, where they send boys with "discipline problems" ...we have a parcel of them in the south. In fact, one of my daughter's friends was sent to one.

Or it could be what it sounds like: a prolonged Christian football camp. Should a female sex offender be teaching there?

What do you think?


Rachel said...

I think she should have lost her job. I think she should no longer be allowed to teach. Her transgression was against her integrity as a teacher, who is supposed to be objective, and grade all her students the same, and you know, not be sexually involved with any of them. But the fact that she was charged with sexual battery on a minor for having sex with someone who was 18!? WTF, you know...meanwhile no one is concerned about this Polanski motherfucker. But, since she was his teacher, there was clearly a power dynamic that would make this manipulative, even if he wanted to have sex with her. I still don't think she should have been charged with sexual battery on a minor, though. Something is wrong with this picture...

polerin said...

Yeah, she shouldn't be allowed back. Her choice to have sex with a student was a serious breach of ethics and abuse of her position as a teacher. The paper should have noted the kid's age, but this is still wrong.

John Powers said...

I'm perpelxed she'd want her job back!

thene said...

iirc some places (the UK is one) have laws that explicitly treat teacher-student sex with an 18-year-old as sex with a minor because the teacher's considered to be in a position of trust. Maybe Ohio is one of those places?

Blue Heron said...

Lots of this teacher student coupling went on at three of the prep schools I attended. Would have given my eye teeth for such an education.

Livingsword said...

Alright not my neck of the woods but I will shoot…

Although the student may have been 18 and in that jurisdiction therefore it may not be considered a statutory sexual offence there is also the power threat hold to be considered. She is in a position of authority over a student and so certainly her actions are that which are completely inappropriate.

She should not be teaching anybody…

sheila said...

DOH! Champions for Christians? Oh My Gorsh!~

First of all, the school sounds a bit bizzare with the way it's set up. ?? weird.!

So the reason she can teach there is because it's not an accredited school? This is just a weird story all the way around.

Is she teaching sex-ed? Health? I don't get it. This one's a head scratcher.

white rabbit said...

I've given up on trying to think what I think about this one.

The school she's teaching at sounds like an outpost of Planet Weird. Maybe she and it deserve each other.

SnowdropExplodes said...

There's so many levels of "ick" in this it's hard to piece together.

Firstly, it is definitely an immoral and unethical act for a teacher to have a sexual relationship with a student, whether that's high school age or university/college age, and regardless of the age of consent in the jurisdiction. The teachers' professional body should most certainly have acted to disbar her from the profession.

However, since there was no "sex with a minor" involved, it seems pretty fucked-up to use a law targeting paedophiles to gain a conviction. That sounds a lot like making up the law as you go along, which is not what is supposed to happen in a modern representative democracy. While there is certainly a case that society has a vested interest in preventing the potential abuses of power with which a sexual relationship between student and teacher is fraught, the structures must be observed. If this is a problem, the law must be changed to allow a prosecution in future events (it is generally accepted to be an abuse of human rights to prosecute someone for an activity that was not on offence at the time of doing it).

Then there's the rank hypocrisy of the "Academy" itself (not to mention the likely quite disturbing distortions that may be being taught there). On top of which, it sounds like a nightmarish place to send anyone!

@Thene: the "abuse of trust" sexual offences in the UK (link is to the official charging guidelines for sexual offences in the UK) apply only to ages 16 and 17; it is a part of the case that the prosecution has to prove that the "victim" was under 18 at the time that the teacher had sex with him/her.

D. said...

This cannot end well.

Hemaworstje said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
DaisyDeadhead said...

Porn-spam deleted... I guess I forgot this is the kind of thread that brings the sleaze-kings out of the woodwork.

kimballperry said...

You are stealing my story and the Enquirer's property (story and photo). You do not have our permission to use them. You can use the links to our story but not steal out story. We wouldn't steal your property. Take it down down and use our links. Kimball Perry, The Cincinnati Enquirer

DaisyDeadhead said...

Um, no, I CREDITED you and linked you and used your NAME. People link me and quote me BY NAME all the time. (BTW, you are welcome to do so.)

"Stealing" is when you don't credit people. If I had stolen it, you couldn't find it by Googling your name, which I see you did. Would you rather I take your name off of it, hack-write it and just claim that I wrote the whole thing, like certain bloggers I could name?

Do you want me to add your name as a tag? I'll be glad to do that. (just did)

It's GOOD to have your name out there, as a writer. It is not a BAD THING. You want to be quoted and mentioned online AS OFTEN AS POSSIBLE, it is GOOD FOR YOUR CAREER.

Are you unaware of how the internet works?

Jesus H, even the Greenville News guys have admitted to me that they like seeing their name all over the net... is Ohio becoming more conservative than the south, now?

DaisyDeadhead said...

And BTW, legally, I can use the story if I don't reprint it in its entirety.

As Stanley Kowalski famously said, "I got a lawyer acquaintance downtown!"

Kia said...

My lawyer acquaintances don't know I have a blog so thanks for the edification Daisy : )

Livingsword said...

Of course different nations have various degrees of freedom around copywrite…I am in Canada and we have a greater degree of free of speech in this regard than at least at the federal level in the US (with the exception of use of small low definition images). As one of my blogs is one of the top Survivor blogs on the planet I often have to deal with infringements of copywrite…people like to use our articles to draw traffic to their pages by doing little creative work…however accommodations can be made…

The Cincinnati Enquirer has the following at its footer to the article quoted:

Copyright ©2009 The Enquirer. All rights reserved.

This means for us that the copywrite protects the photo and its use is not allowed at all unless permission is given. The article itself can be quoted to a third of its length and must have the originator named and linked to (credit must be given).

Personally I did actually notice the use of the large image and was surprised by it…the text length seems to be of typically recognized blogging standard…

On another note it seems your labels are now working?

DaisyDeadhead said...

Actually, I first saw this story UNLINKED to the original, on GreenvilleOnline, reprinted IN ITS ENTIRETY.

And that's who I should have linked to, as I usually do. Ironically, its because I did NOT want to deprive the author of his well-earned hits (which would signal his editor that he is doing a good job, since his stories are popular), that I hunted down the original and linked directly to the Enquirer ...I did all this as a public service to the author. Hah! Your welcome, Kimball! No good deed goes unpunished! (If I'd just linked to my local Greenville News and omitted Perry's name, he'd never have known.)


Personally I did actually notice the use of the large image and was surprised by it

DEAD AIR a southern blog; we do it BIG here. :)

On another note it seems your labels are now working?

*Figured out a work-around. It's made me feel like something of a geek, she preened!

Afraid if I say anything, Blogger will "patch it up"--if the goal is ultimately to limit our ability to make tags. (?) What I wanna know: is this an error or some Blogger bright-idea run amuck? ARGH! :P

*Note, pardon digression, we refer to recent Blogger inability to post more tags, various imposed tag-limits that make no sense, etc.

mikeb302000 said...

I guess she shouldn't be teaching young men.

I think you're so cool, Daisy, the way you responded to the Cincinnati Enquirer. That hasn't happened to me yet, but when it does, I'll know how to act.


DaisyDeadhead said...

Mike, thank you! Dunno if Kimball is coming back or not, but I hope he reads and digests what I've said here.

PS: Livingsword, go to "Edit posts", check the post in question and add label through the drop-down menu. So far, this method is still working, but you have to publish FIRST (with previously-used tags or no tags) and then go back and edit in the way I have described.

Super-huge pain in the ass, and I hope Blogger fixes this FIASCO. I'd hate to switch to Wordpress at this point, but strongly considering it.

Zan said...

Actually Daisy, so long as you're not making money off of the photo/story and they're in the public sphere, you can use them. So long as you are crediting people who need to be credited, you're cool. You get in trouble when you try to make money off of it. Which means the Greenville people may be in trouble, unless they have an agreement with the Enquirer, but you're not.

It used to drive us INSANE when we'd see the television reporters literally reading from our paper on the air. We did all the work, wrote it up and published it in the paper and they come along, snip out anything they want to use in the morning and pass off our work as theirs all frakking day long. The paper's lawyers had to get invovled and the tv station had to start paying us a nice little fee :)

Also, this woman should lose her job and her license, but the criminal charges? Yeah, no. He was legally an adult, so she didn't break the law. It's creepy and unethical, but not illegal.