BY GENA HUFF, Editor
An appeal filed February 6 in the Alabama Court of Criminal Appeals was denied for Charli Jones Parker, the former Pickens Academy teacher currently serving a sentence after a guilty plea of improper sexual contact with two students in 2016.
The appeal, filed on behalf of Parker by M. Virginia Buck of Northport, claimed Parker’s conviction was unconstitutional because it holds school employees to a higher standard than other professions that might work with young people; that Alabama law did not cover improper sexual contact between a teacher and student at private schools until the middle of 2016; and that Parker has a constitutional right to “private, consensual, sexual intimacy.”
The appeal contended none of the sex acts with the students occurred at school and the age of consent in Alabama is 16 years. A lawsuit filed against the school by one of the victims on the same day the appeal was denied disputes that claim, alleging sexual relations happened in Parker’s classroom during school hours.
In the Court of Appeals decision, it was noted the statute argued, S13A-6-81 (formerly S13A-6-80) was amended to include private schools and Parker’s charges occurred before the changes. The reasoning within the appeal is the language of the law did not include private schools and as such did not apply to Parker. The court “did not find Parker’s reasoning persuasive.”
See complete story in the Pickens County Herald.