MARION COUNTY, Fla. - A math teacher at Dunnellon High School in Marion County has been arrested and charged with lewd and lascivious molestation of a 15-year-old student, deputies said.
Chester Pacana, 35, was arrested Monday and is accused of inappropriately touching a teenage girl, deputies said.
The teen told deputies that Pacana touched her leg and breast while she was in his classroom and in front of other students, investigators said.
The teen told deputies she went to his classroom Feb. 8 and sat near his desk while they talked. She said Pacana began playing with the holes in her jeans on her left thigh. She said she leaned forward to get something out of the desk drawer and Pacana reached inside her shirt and touched her breast, deputies said.
The teen said she quickly left the room after the incident and told an assistant principal who told a resource school deputy, deputies said.
“This victim felt violated beyond the point of any kind of normal touching that is something that would be acceptable by a teacher,” said Lauren Lettelier with the Marion County Sheriff's Office.
Deputies said during their investigation they spoke to several students who said they saw Pacana’s inappropriate behavior with the victim.
Students said Pacana bought the victim lunch once and would sing songs to her. Another student reported that Pacana had previously made an inappropriate comment to the victim when she wore a new dress to school, deputies said.
"Touching her shoulder, touching thigh from time to time was seen by other students," said Lettelier.
Pacana denied touching the 15-year-old when he was questioned.
Deputies said they investigated the incident thoroughly and do not doubt the student’s story.
Pacana teaches geometry and math, and is the faculty sponsor of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes.
He bonded out of jail shortly before 8 p.m. Monday.
Officials say the 15 y/o reported the crime to a Dunnellon High School assistant principal, who then relayed the info to the Resource Deputy— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) February 20, 2017
Deputies say the student told them that her teacher; inappropriately touched her leg and breast. #WFTV— Myrt Price (@MPriceWFTV) February 20, 2017
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