Fla. Teacher Had Sex with 14-Year-Old Boy in Barn, Urged Him to ‘Delete Everything’ on Snapchat
A married Florida middle school teacher has pleaded guilty to having sex with a 14-year-old male student and sending nude photos to him, according to multiple reports.
Stephanie Peterson, 27, faces between five and 10 years in prison after pleading guilty to one count of lewd or lascivious battery sex act with a child, a second-degree felony. If the case had gone to trial, she could have faced up to 15 years in prison.
She also pleaded guilty to one count of transmission of harmful material to minors by electronic means, a third-degree felony.
Peterson was arrested after the teen revealed the relationship to his parents. Police said the sexual relationship began in November 2017. The boy, an eighth grader, had been her student the previous year, Sheriff Mike Chitwood told last February.
According to court documents obtained by PEOPLE, the student said Peterson would send him nude photos. On multiple occasions, Peterson picked the boy up from his home around 11 p.m. and brought him back a few hours later while her husband was at work. The sex occurred in her house, her car and in a barn behind the student’s house. The sexual contact occurred between Nov. 1, 2017 and Jan. 31, 2018, according to the court documents.
Peterson also bought the teen marijuana and bowls for smoking it, according to the documents, though she was not ultimately charged with the drugs.
The student said that his grades began to suffer after their relationship started. He also said Peterson told him they had to keep their relationship secret.
Authorities gathered evidence of Peterson’s Snapchat messages after she learned that the boy’s mother was going to the police, according to the documents.
“I hate you,” she wrote to the student, according to the court documents. “So much.”
Then she wrote, “Please tell her it was the worst decision of my life and I know it was and idk where my brain was but that I somehow fell in love with you briefly and idk why and I’ll never be the same person because of it.”
Then she pleaded with the boy: “Delete everything.”
A sentencing date has not yet been set. The judge ordered a pre-sentence investigation to help reach a decision.
Peterson’s attorney did not immediately return PEOPLE’s call for comment