Friday, February 23, 2018
Public safety

Former Canterbury School of Florida teacher facing child sex charge

ST. PETERSBURG — A former substitute teacher at the Canterbury School of Florida has been arrested on a charge that she had sexual relations with a 16-year-old student.

The Pinellas County Sheriff's Office said Elisha Joy Kingsley, 39, was arrested Monday. Detectives began their investigation July 22 after they were told Kingsley, 3626 Bayshore Blvd. NE, and the boy were having an inappropriate relationship, sheriff's officials said.

Officials said Kingsley befriended the boy while she was a teacher at Canterbury, and they began texting each other in mid June. They then met at various locations throughout Pinellas County, officials said.

Canterbury, a private school, released a statement through Brock Communications in Tampa.

"This situation is deeply sad for us, because our students and their safety is our primary concern," head of school Mac Hall said.

"The teacher resigned before this information became available to us, however once we were made aware of the information we immediately reported the matter to DCF as required by law."

Kingsley, a substitute teacher at Canterbury last year, was arrested on a charge of unlawful sexual activity with a minor. She was released from the Pinellas County Jail on $20,000 bail.

Michael Scaringe, another former Canterbury teacher, was acquitted in 1996 of molesting a 14-year-old student at Bay Point Middle School, where he worked as a substitute band teacher.

His trial in that case included testimony from a former Canterbury student, who claimed that Scaringe was known for engaging in sexual behavior with students when he worked there in 1993. Scaringe was later found guilty in a New York court of raping a 13-year-old girl in 2009.

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