Martha Sadder Pope, a 43-year-old secretary at Elba High School in Alabama, got in trouble with the law for getting a little to close to a 16-year-old student.
According to reports, Ms. Pope was arrested for having a sexual relationship with the student Pope and the student reportedly had oral sex and intercourse before she was busted and booked into the Coffee County Jail, according to WTVY.
Pope is charged with Engaging in a Sex Act With a Student, a felony. Judging by her mugshot, however, she doesn’t appear to be too remorseful.
Pope, who was hired by the school a year ago, has been placed on administrative leave with pay.
— New York Post (@nypost) October 14, 2021
Over the course of the past year alone, a handful of teachers have been arrested on similar charges, including 25-year-old substitute teacher Alexis Mercedes Boberg in Baltimore, Beulah High School teacher Kelsie Schmidt in North Dakota, Rancocas Valley Regional High School teacher Alexandra Reiner in New Jersey, and 50-year-old Florida substitute teacher Angela Jean Stanton in Florida. Additionally, Texas teachers Meredith Null and Edna Longoria were arrested on similar charges.
As for why the number of these incidents has seemingly increased, studies suggest that smartphones are the primary reason for the spike in illicit relationships, as it allows teachers to communicate with the minors without supervision.
According to a report from the Texas Education Association, smartphones make it easy for teachers to privately text and talk with students and also make it possible for teachers and students to share explicit images.