A 38-year-old Texas kindergarten teacher says her heavy drinking is the reason she had sex with four high school students. Heather Robertson, 38, is facing four charges of an improper relationship between a student and educator in the town of Lufkin, about 170 miles south east of Dallas. Robertson was arrested on April 22 when her car was pulled over by a Lufkin cop. As a result, local school superintendent, Mary Anne Whiteker, told KTRE that Robertson is “no longer an employee of the district. All the findings of the investigation were turned over to authorities.”
Here’s what you need to know:
1. During One Incident, Robertson Is Accused of Having Sex With 2 Students at Once; the Sex Was Unprotected
According to the Lufkin Daily News, one student admitted to “chatting and sexting” Robertson on Snapchat. The pair became friends on social media shortly after spring break. During one conversation, Robertson allegedly invited the boy over to her apartment. When he asked if he could bring a friend, she agreed. The boy said when he arrived, Robertson was vaping on her couch. After a brief conversation, Robertson led the boys into her bedroom, undressed and had sex with the pair.
It was those two boys that led the investigators to other victims, reports the Daily News. One of those other boys also contacted Robertson through Snapchat. He said that Robertson would pick him up after he had snuck out of his home.
2. Robertson Could Be Facing 20 Years in Prison
Robertson has allegedly admitted to having sex with the boys, the first occurred in the latter months of 2016 while the latest occurred on April 14, reports the Lufkin Daily News. The sex was unprotected as Robertson says she can no longer have children. The Daily News adds, citing a criminal affidavit, that due to her drinking, Robertson says she has issues remembering details.
In March 2016, state troopers arrested Robertson for a DUI. KTRE reports that Robertson was given a verbal warning that her job was in jeopardy after that arrest.
According to public records, Robertson remains in jail on a $200,000 bond. If found guilty, Robertson could face 20 years in prison.
3. Robertson’s Facebook Page Shows Her to Be a Loving Mother
Robertson’s Facebook page is full with images of her with her two daughters. According to that page, Robertson attended Lufkin High School, graduating in 1993, and began working in the Lufkin school district at Burley Primary School in 2000. Robertson left that job in 2013. Since then, Robertson has been teaching in the Hudson school district as a kindergarten teacher. Robertson studied at Stephen F. Austin State University in Nacogdoches, Texas, and is originally from Middleview, Michigan.
KTRE reports that none of Robertson’ alleged crimes took place on a Hudson school district campus.
KTRE reports that Robertson was granted a divorce in January 2017. Her husband, Cory Robertson, is a Chevrolet car salesman in the area.
4. Robertson’s Arrest Comes Just a Few Months After a Lufkin Cheerleading Coach Was Arrested for a Similar Crime
KTRE reported in October 2016 that a cheerleading coach at Lufkin High School cheer coach, Mary Thigpen, was accused of having sexual relations with a student. Thigpen and the student, similar to Robertson, contacted each other on Snapchat.
Thigpen was accused of performing oral sex on an 18-year-old student at Crown Colony Golf Course in March 2016. Thigpen then found herself accused of a similar indiscretion going back to 2010, though that incident was outside of the statute of limitations.
5. There’s Been a Steady Rise in Inappropriate Teacher/Student Relationships in Texas in the Last Few Years
Speaking to KTRE, a spokeswoman for the Texas Education Agency, said that there has been a steady increase in the number of inappropriate student/teacher relationships. In 2010, there were 141 reported cases in Texas, that number rose to 163 in 2013 and in 2016, the number stood at 222. In 2017, the number stands at 159. The Robertson case is the fourth in Angelina County since 2013.