PASADENA, Texas—A former math teacher at Beverly Hills Intermediate School in Pasadena ISD has been charged by the Harris County District Attorney's Office with five felony counts for allegedly engaging in improper relationships with four students.
Charges were filed Monday afternoon against LaShawn Simmons, 41, who last month resigned her position with the school district in lieu of termination.
Arrangements were being made Tuesday morning for Simmons to surrender to Harris County authorities.
The five charges include one count of sexual assault of a child under 17, a second-degree felony. She is also charged with two counts of engaging in an improper relationship between an educator and a student, also a second-degree felony.
The two other charges filed against Simmons—on-line solicitation of a minor and possession of child pornography—are both third-degree felonies.
The students, two adults and two juveniles, are currently enrolled at J. Frank Dobie High School in the Pasadena ISD. Beverly Hills is a seventh- and eighth-grade feeder campus for Dobie.
“The allegations are very serious,” said Dr. Kirk Lewis, superintendent for Pasadena ISD. “Anytime a teacher violates the trust of a child, it makes it more difficult for the majority of teachers who genuinely care for the safety and well-being of students. We will continue to work together in the Pasadena ISD to provide a safe environment for our children to learn.”
Pasadena ISD police sought charges against Simmons after completing a two-month investigation in the case. The investigation followed a complaint from a concerned parent regarding alleged online messaging between her child and Simmons on a social media network.
The complaint was made on Dec. 10, 2012. After that, Simmons was immediately placed on administrative leave without access to students at the school.
Simmons had been employed as a teacher at Beverly Hills for 14 years.
Anyone who believes they have information related to this case should contact Trae Morris, detective with the Pasadena ISD Police Department, at 713-740-0063.