by Anthony Panissidi
A Spanish teacher at the district’s intermediate school has been charged with sexually assaulting one of her students, authorities said.
Erin T. Haskell, 31, of Barnegat is charged with the first-degree crime of aggravated sexual assault, second-degree crimes of sexual assault and endangering the welfare of a child and a third-degree crime of exhibiting obscene material to a minor, said Ocean County Prosecutor Marlene Lynch Ford in a statement.
Haskell, a teacher at Intermediate South in Beachwood, is employed by the Toms River Regional School District. An investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office with the Barnegat and Beachwood police departments determined an inappropriate relationship developed between Haskell and one of her underage students, Ford said.
The Prosecutor’s Office will not release any other information pertaining to the student in order to protect the child’s identity, Ford said.
Haskell teaches Spanish to fifth- through eighth-grade students at an annual salary of $52,800, according to DataUniverse.
“We are aware of the allegations made regarding one of our teachers who taught at Intermediate South,” said Toms River Regional Schools Superintendent Frank Roselli. “The board is aware of the allegations and took action at our last board meeting on November 20th assuring that said teacher would not be allowed to resume her teaching position pending the completion of the investigation by the Prosecutor’s Office. At this point in time we do not want to make any comments that might compromise the ongoing investigation.”
A Facebook search of Haskell also revealed her as a co-founder of the Ocean County Drama Club, which formed this year.
Bail for Haskell was set at $300,000, and she planned to surrender herself to authorities, Ford said. She was not listed in Ocean County Jail inmate records Tuesday evening.
Bradley D. Billhimer, a Toms River attorney, will represent Haskell, Ford said. Phone calls to his office went unanswered Tuesday evening.
The investigation is being conducted by Detective Melissa Matthews of the Prosecutor’s Office and Detective Sgt. Glen DeMarco of the Beachwood Police Department. Anyone with information pertaining to the case is encouraged to call Matthews at 732-929-2027 or DeMarco at 732-286-6000 ext. 100, Ford said.
The Asbury Park Press asked the Prosecutor’s Office for a photo of the suspect, but they declined. However, the Asbury Park Press confirmed her photo from Facebook.com.
State law allows authorities discretion in releasing suspect photos, but they often refuse to do so saying media publicity could affect their ability to select a jury.
This article was written by Anthony Panissidi and originally published on dailyrecord