Two Queens school teachers are facing criminal actions for inappropriate behavior with young students, the Queens District Attorney's Office announced Wednesday.
Simon Watts, 38, of St. Albans, a fourth-grade teacher at P.S.15, was arraigned Wednesday in Queens Criminal Court on charges of second-degree course of sexual conduct against a child, first-degree sexual abuse, and endangering the welfare of a child.
Watts is accused of sexually abusing five of his female students -- ranging in age from 8 to 10 -- on several occasions between September 1, 2007 and March 9, 2010, according to Queens District Attorney Richard Brown.
In most cases, authorities say Watts made the young girls touch him in a sexual manner. In one instance, Watts apparently told a student, "Don't tell anybody..."
Watts, who faces up to seven years behind bars if convicted, was ordered held on $200,000 bail and is due in court May 3.
In the second case, 41-year-old Christine Williams, a fifth-grade special education teacher at P.S. 80 in Jamaica, was arraigned Monday on charges of third-degree rape, third-degree criminal sexual act and endangering the welfare of a child.
Williams is accused of having sex with a 15-year-old male student at her house on at least two separate nights between January 29 and February 5. The student was allegedly a friend of the family.
If convicted, Williams faces up to four years in jail.
"The charges in both cases are disturbing on so many levels," said District Attorney Brown. "As teachers and adults, the defendants were in positions of power and had no business having any contact with minors outside of school work. Children should be able to remain children. Such alleged conduct cannot go unpunished."Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun