Arrested Jefferson County Teacher Withdraws Preliminary Hearing | Newspaper


CHARLES TOWN – A Jefferson High School teacher who allegedly had an inappropriate relationship with a 17-year-old student has waived his right to a preliminary hearing after pleading not guilty to two felony counts.

Willie Edward Belmonte, 34, of Charles Town, has been charged with sexual abuse by a person in a position of trust and using obscene material with the intent to seduce a minor, according to Circuit Court records of the Jefferson County.

Right now, her case is in transition pending presentation to a grand jury. According to records from the Eastern Regional Prison, Belmonte is not currently in jail.

On August 30, the Jefferson High Resource Manager was approached by two young students who expressed concerns for their friend who they said was in an inappropriate relationship with Belmonte, one of the school’s health teachers. .

Witnesses told police that they observed text messages on their friend’s phone, as well as alleged pornographic images of Belmonte, court records show. They also alleged that the relationship became sexually active in August.

Shortly after learning of the allegations, Jefferson County schools notified parents and “immediately took action” by removing him from the classroom, alerting law enforcement and cutting Belmonte’s access to the classroom. building by confiscating their keys and badges and deactivating the badge, cutting off all access, including JCS and West Virginia Department of Education online programs.

The district has also issued an entry ban for all JCS properties, told WVDE to ensure that children are barred from outside Jefferson County, law enforcement has asked to search all electronic records for inappropriate content and have notified the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources. of the case as potential child abuse.

According to court records, on August 30, the family of the alleged victim responded to the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Department asking them to speak with Staff Sgt. Williams about these alleged incidents. When asked if there was any truth to the allegations, she reportedly replied “Yes”.

On September 2, the minor was questioned at the Child Advocacy Center in which she claimed Belmonte would request nude photos of her, court records show. He also allegedly sent inappropriate videos of himself.

Sexual intercourse was also alleged to have taken place within the past year, according to the criminal complaint filed in the case.

“The underage student victim said late last school year the accused took her to a closet at Jefferson High School” where alleged sexual behavior occurred during school hours.

Police said during the investigation, several electronic devices were seized and subjected to a forensic examination. Alleged corroborating evidence was found to corroborate the statements made by the witnesses and the victim.

The district said in its statement that it respects the process of the justice system.

“Our justice system is rightly set up to ensure that every individual has due process and is presumed innocent,” the statement said. “We fully support our law enforcement partners and continue to balance their need for due process with our community’s need for information.

“As law enforcement and the judiciary go through their process, Jefferson County schools would like to publicly recognize and appreciate the students who courageously reported the incident and the administration who established a relationship of trust. so that they feel safe. We work very hard to ensure that our students are thoughtful, caring and responsible citizens in a world that can often put them in difficult situations.

“We’re proud that they rose to the challenge and did the right thing by reporting so that we could do the right thing when it came to protection. We would also like to recognize and thank our law enforcement partners. Their quick response and close partnership enabled us to both support students and comply with the law. “

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