Sarah Jones Mugshot

Sarah Jones Mugshot

A Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader and her mother were in an Ohio court Monday amidst allegations that she had sex with a student, according to MSNBC.

26-year-old Sarah Jones was indicted last week on charges of first-degree sexual abuse and unlawful use of electronic devices for illegal activities.

The indictment against Jones alleges that she had a sexual relationship with a senior at Dixie Heights High School, where she taught until she resigned late last year.

Additionally, Jones' mother, Cheryl Jones, was indicted for tampering with evidence. Cheryl is the principal at Twenhofel Middle School and has been placed on paid administrative leave, according to Dixie Heights Superintendent Terri Cox-Cruey.

The Jones' both pleaded not guilty to their respective charges Monday.

The attorney for the Jones women told presiding Judge Patricia Summe that the alleged victim's family came to court to support Jones.

Both women are forced to wear electronic monitoring bracelets as a condition of their $15,000 bail. The trial is scheduled to commence on June 27.

Jones resigned from her teaching job in November shortly after the allegations became public. Yet, she continued to deny all accusations.

"The student denies it. The parents of the student are upset that this has gone where it has gone. They don't have anything bad to say about Sarah. Sarah denies it," attorney Eric Deters said in December. "There's no victim. There's nobody saying 'Hey, this happened.'"

Deters is not currently representing Jones because he was suspended last month for ethics violations, however, he will resume his post leading Jones' defense when his suspension lapses on April 24.

Cheryl Jones "was at work when she learned what happened with the grand jury," Cox-Cruey said. "She will be on leave until we can monitor the situation and see what actions we need to take."

"The day the police openly investigated, that was the same day she submitted her resignation," said Cox-Cruey. "No parents or students ever approached me in all the years she worked for the district with any concern."

"It's just surprising, it's sad. That's all I can say right now," Dixie Heights track coach Erin Leeper said. "I just pray for the families and hope everything gets worked out the right way," he added.

Melissa Boyers and her daughter Mayrah voiced support for Cheryl Jones.

"I think she's great, and she's always nice to us and fair," said Mayrah Bowers, a student at Twenhofel Middle School.

"I can't say she's guilty or not, but if it was my daughter and there was any kind of evidence out there, I'd try my best to get rid of it. I would," Melissa Boyers said.

"Sarah has maintained her innocence. The indictment of her mother is completely baseless. Cheryl Jones did not tamper with evidence," Lester said in a news release.

The testimony proffered by MSNBC's report tends to point towards Jones' innocence, as the alleged victim's family and the community at large seem to actively support the accused.

Yet, the prosecution must have a sufficiently formidable case because it has concluded that it will continue to pursue legal action against the Jones women, despite that support.

Additionally, the government takes a hard stance against statutory rape as it is responsible to protect minors from harm even if the alleged victim does not wish to pursue legal action.

Accordingly, as the ongoing case and impending trial date approach it will be interesting to see how the evidence unfolds in this case.

What do you think?

 

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