By Conrad Dudderar
Senior Staff Writer
A former Yukon Catholic School teacher is due to be sentenced next month after waiving her right to a jury trial on a charge of sending sexually explicit text messages to a student.
Samantha Ann Brasses, 32, is set to enter a plea and be sentenced Feb. 23 in Canadian County District Court. The 9 a.m. hearing will be before District Judge Paul Hesse.
Brasses, who previously taught at St. John Nepomuk Catholic School, was charged in June 2019 with unlawful communication with a minor by use of technology. The felony crime is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and/or a maximum $10,000 fine.
The boy’s parents contacted the school after they discovered the messages between Brasses and their 14-year-old son, according to a Yukon police report. The school principal contacted the Yukon Police Department in May 2020 to report the allegation, and an investigation led to formal charges.
Brasses, represented by attorney Amber Martin, waived her right to a jury trial on Dec. 15, 2020. Judge Hesse then set the Feb. 23rd sentencing hearing.
The defendant had waived her right to a preliminary hearing on June 17, 2020.
Brasses has been free since posting a $20,000 bond at the Canadian County Jail on the day she was formally charged 19 months ago.
SEXUALLY EXPLICIT TEXTS FOUND
A forensic examination of the boy’s cell phone uncovered descriptive remarks about Brasses’ intentions with the alleged victim, according to an arrest warrant affidavit signed by Yukon police Det. Terry Prigmore.
The text conversation included several sexually explicit texts that suggested Brasses wanted to have sex with the boy – and she wrote several times that she loved him, the affidavit shows.
The student began sending the teacher text messages in September 2018 at which time St. John Nepomuk officials cautioned Brasses about “student and teacher boundaries,” the police report reads. School officials did not believe the conversation had become sexual in nature at the time the student and Brasses were questioned.
The boy had become “very private with his iPhone,” and hid it about two weeks before the police investigation began. An Instagram app on the student’s phone showed conversations believed to be sexual in nature, investigators wrote in their report.
Police did not believe there was any physical or sexual contact between Brasses and the boy.
Brasses was fired from her teaching position at St. John Nepomuk Catholic School and reportedly moved away from Yukon.