A former student teacher and assistant track coach at Conard High School in West Hartford is accused of having a consensual sexual relationship with an 18-year-old male student. This, apparently, isn’t just against school rules, but is against the law by statute in Connecticut. The teacher now faces charges of Sexual Assault.
The twenty-two-year-old Tayler Boncal was charged Thursday with three separate counts of second-degree sexual assault for this consensual affair. She is accused of engaging in intercourse and oral sex with the male student, who at all times was over 18.
Under CGS Sec. 53a-71, a person is guilty of sexual assault in the second degree when the teacher engages in sex with a student at any age who is enrolled in the school in which the teacher teachers or coaches. Under the law that would apply to Ms. Boncal, she could be guilty of a class C felony, punishable by 1-10 years in prison and up to a $10,000 fine.
Some legal experts think the law, as written and applied to consenting adults, may be unenforceable and unconstitutional. Consensual sex between adults, off school grounds, cannot rise to the level of a crime, even if it is entirely and properly a firing offense for the employer.
Components of the statute prohibit sex between a teacher and minor and set out different levels of punishment. It is unknown at this time if this statute has ever been used to prosecute an alleged offender under these facts.
The affair first came to light when a concerned parent notified school officials about an inappropriate relationship between a former student teacher and a Conard student, West Hartford schools Superintendent Tom Moore confirmed. Boncal completed her student teaching in the fall but was still working for the district as an assistant track coach at the high school. Moore said her employment with the district has been terminated.
Boncal was living in New Britain at the time of the relationship, and all of the encounters took place there, police said.
The 1 student and Boncal both told police that the relationship began when he initiated contact and pursued her. Boncal told police that she taught social sciences and that the 18-year-old was in some of the classes.
On Dec. 4, Boncal was hired as a track and field coach. The student is not a member of the track team.
“Boncal stated that she loved the victim and was emotional regarding her feelings for him.”
The student initially denied the relationship when questions, but he eventually confessed to the encounters according to the police the affidavit. He and Boncal exchanged sexually explicit photos and messages. Boncal told police that most of the communication was done on Facebook Messenger.
The police wrote that “the victim refused to provide a written statement,” and that the “the victim expressed concern for Boncal with regard to the outcome of this investigation.”
Conard High School Principal Julio Duarte sent a letter to parents alerting them to the arrest.
Superintendent Moore said on Friday that he was “furious” about the violation of faith entrusted to school employees.
“Whether someone is 21, 41, or 61, the moment they are a part of a school as a student teacher, mentor, or coach, they enter into a sacred trust with our students and community,” Moore said.
Boncal was arraigned in New Britain Superior Court. She obtained bond and was released. Her next court date is March 1.
Boncal graduated from Central Connecticut State University in New Britain in December 2017, university spokesman Mark McLaughlin said Friday afternoon.
Author: Committed Conservative
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