NEW HAVEN, Conn. (WTNH) — Jennifer Frechette, 44, has been charged with second degree sexual assault, after police say she had an inappropriate sexual relationship with a student. Frechette is a teacher at Wilbur Cross High School in New Haven.
Attorney Tara Knight represents the alleged victim, a 15-year-old boy.
“When mothers and fathers send their kids to school they expect that their kids will be kept safe and not exploited in any way. If the allegations prove true in this case, this is the ultimate exploitation and the ultimate insult and offense to a mom and dad,” said Knight.
Frechette turned herself into New Haven Police after a warrant was issued last week. On Monday, new details about the charges against her are coming to light. The New Haven Register notes that according to the affidavit two security guards found Frechette and the alleged victim in a makeshift bed inside a classroom back on January 5. Also in the room, a bag of condoms.
The guards told police that both Frechette and the student were clothed at the time. Frechette reportedly told them nothing happened, telling the guards the student had “sweet talked” her. She later told police she and the victim had been trying on costumes for a play and the bed was set up for comfort.
Knight declined to give specifics on the case, but notes in cases like this the details can be vital to the prosecution.
“Any evidence of premeditation and thinking this through I think only exacerbates the problem. Not that it would be okay it it were a one time thing or if it were spontaneous,” said Knight.
Frechette’s alleged involvement with the student was not a one time thing. According to the police report investigator’s reviewed the victim’s cell phone and found explicit messages. In March, the victim told police about an incident in December in which he claims Frechette performed a sexual act on him on a couch in the classroom.
“There was a pattern of activity that was very troublesome and that the family is very upset by. And, kids need to be protected by their teachers. They need to be nurtured by their teachers. They don’t need to be exploited by their teachers,” said Knight.
Frechette has been on paid leave since the incident was reported in January. On Friday, interim Superintendent of New Haven Public Schools Reginald Mayo released a statement saying the district is moving forward with recommendations Frechette be terminated.
WTNH reached out to Frechette’s lawayer for comment but has not heard back.