Dance teacher accused of sex with 15-year-old boy
CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. (WSVN) -- A South Florida dance teacher accused of having a sexual relationship with a minor was arrested and charged with statutory rape.
Coral Springs Police took 30-year-old Jennifer Deberry into custody Friday. Police said she met a 15-year-old boy at The Dance Effect, a studio near Coral Springs Drive and Royal Palm Boulevard.
Detectives said the arrest marks the end of a long investigation into the dance instructor. They said her relationship with the student lasted for about four months.
The boy contacted authorities in January. "He came in and gave a statement attesting the fact they had been involved in a romantic relationship from September of 2012 until January of this year," said Coral Springs Police Sgt. Carla Kmiotek.
The student confirmed to investigators that the relationship began at The Dance Effect. In addition to his statement, the minor provided more than 100 pages of incriminating text messages. "[The texts] outlined the nature of their relationship and some of the intimate encounters they had and the course of that 4-month-old relationship," said Kmiotek.
Among the messages Deberry sent her client were the following:
- "<3 Thank you for the best weekend ever :D"
- "<3 It was so perfect and amazing and making love with you was just the greatest feeling in the whole world <3 :D XOXO"
- "I hope one day I will be their daughter in law. I cant (sic) believe how I want to spend the rest of my life with you and I'm sure of it."
Kmiotek said detectives had enough evidence to make an arrest. "Once they gathered and had all their evidence, [they] were ready to move forward and did file charges, and they took her into custody," she said.
Concerned parent Scott Shear said he took his 5-year-old daughter out of Deberry's studio as soon as he heard about the allegations. "It's crazy to me, as a parent," he said. "I hear about it all the time, which is scary, and [I] try to keep kids safe as much as possible. It's just scary; you put your trust in other people, and sometimes it doesn't work out well."
Deberry was released on a $10,000 bond over the weekend.
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