The two-month investigation began when a parent allegedly found inappropriate Facebook messages between the teacher and her son.
For 14 years, LaShawn Simmons taught math at Beverly Hills Intermediate, but she resigned last month after allegations surfaced that she had improper relationships with several students at J. Frank Dobie High School. Beverly Hills Intermediate is a seventh- and eighth-grade feeder campus for Dobie.
On Tuesday, those allegations became criminal charges.
"We understand there were four students that were involved and they were not her students at the time of the incident. They had already passed through the intermediate school level and were in high school. It doesn't make it any better, certainly," said Dr. Kirk Lewis, superintendent of Pasadena ISD.
Dr. Lewis says two of the students involved were minors and two were adults; all currently attend Dobie High School. Simmons is charged with one count of sexual assault of a child under 17, two counts of engaging in an improper relationship between an educator and a student, and one count each of online solicitation of a minor and possession of child pornography.
The district says the complaint was made on Dec. 10, 2012, and that Simmons was immediately placed on administrative leave without access to students at the school.
Parents we talked to were outraged.
"It's outrageous. What else can I say? My daughter went to that school -- she (Simmons) has been there 14 years, I think -- she went there, my other daughter went there, my son's going there now. It's ridiculous," said a parent who would only identify himself as 'Lupe.'
But students who went to Beverly Hills Intermediate and now Dobie High School told us rumors have been floating around for years.
"My sophomore year, I heard of that. Some older kids that were seniors that graduated, that they received pictures from her and stuff. That's it," said student Ivan Macias.
Court documents show she allegedly contacted some of the students through Facebook, and sent others lewd text messages. It's all extremely shocking, says the superintendent
"When something like this happens, it's usually a less experienced teacher. Again, it just makes it that much worse; she knew better," said Dr. Lewis.
Court documents state Simmons allegedly took some of the students back to her apartment and had sex with them.
Simmons was not at her Pasadena apartment Tuesday when we showed up to ask about the allegations.
Anyone who has other information related to this case are asked to contact Trae Morris, detective with the Pasadena ISD Police Department, at 713-740-0063.
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