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Tampa teacher rearrested on new sex charges

TAMPA — A former Davidsen Middle School teacher was re-arrested Tuesday night, accused of having sex more than 20 times with another of her students.

Stephanie Ragusa's smiling mug shot marked her second booking record in less than a month after authorities charged her Tuesday night with lewd or lascivious battery and two counts of sex with a 15-year-old boy.

Ragusa, 27 at the time, had sex with the boy on Feb. 15, 2007, at her home, sheriff's spokeswoman Debbie Carter stated in a news release. Ragusa provided the victim with a contraceptive, Carter said.

The boy was her student at the time.

Last month, on March 10, the two communicated via cell phone text messages and agreed to meet again at the boy's home, Carter said. Again, they engaged in sex, and Ragusa gave the boy alcohol, she said.

Three days later, Ragusa was arrested on five counts of lewd and lascivious battery involving a different boy, a 14-year-old who turned 15 over the course of their relationship, officials said.

In that incident, investigators say Ragusa offered to help the boy overcome his shyness before bringing him back to her apartment and having sex with him.

Both victims told investigators about two tattoos in Ragusa's pelvic region, which are only visible without clothes, Carter said.

Hired by the school district in 2006, Ragusa, now 29, of Lake Bella Vista Drive in Tampa, was working at Martinez Middle as a math teacher when the charges were filed. She has been suspended without pay from her teaching job. She was being held on $22,500 bail late Tuesday.

Carter said the investigation is continuing.

Teacher accused of child porn resigns: Pierce Middle School science teacher Charles Young has resigned. He was arrested last week, charged with 60 counts of possession of child pornography, one for each image allegedly found on his computer after he loaned it to the school's resource officer. Young has been out of the classroom since late last year.

Rebecca Catalanello can be reached at (813) 226-3383 or rcatalanello@sptimes.com.

Tampa teacher rearrested on new sex charges 04/15/08 [Last modified: Friday, April 18, 2008 4:07pm]

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