PIERSON, Fla. - A campus advisor and volleyball coach at T. Dewitt Taylor Middle-High School in Pierson was arrested on allegations of performing a sex act on a 14-year-old boy in a gym bathroom.
Keyunta Murphy, 23, was taken into custody around midnight Tuesday at his home in Pierson, the Volusia County Sheriff's Office said.
The Sheriff’s Office said it was alerted to the incident around 2 p.m. Monday after the victim’s mother contacted the school resource deputy at Taylor Middle-High. The mother said her son told her that he was sexually abused by a school staff member around noon Monday.
The boy said Murphy contacted him during class and told him to come to the office with him, according to deputies. The boy agreed, but instead of going to the office, the two went to a gym bathroom on the middle school side of campus, where the boy claimed that Murphy performed a sex act on him, the Sheriff's Office said.
The boy said he and Murphy had previously conversed via Instagram, and Murphy had offered in a message to pay the victim "$200 to touch it," according to deputies.
A detective reviewed Instagram messages between Murphy and the victim and confirmed they had discussed Monday’s meeting in the gym bathroom. He also found messages from Murphy asking for photos of the victim’s genitals and offering to pay him, deputies said.
Murphy was arrested and taken to the Volusia County Branch Jail, where he’s being held on $50,000 bail on charges of lewd or lascivious battery on a victim under 16, using a computer to seduce/solicit/lure a child and unlawful use of a two-way communication device.
Volusia County Public Schools said Tuesday that Murphy voluntarily resigned for personal reasons.
Parents were notified Tuesday of the incident.
"I have some information regarding our campus advisor who was arrested early this morning by the Sheriff's Office," the school principal said in a robo call sent home to parents.
Jessie Price picks up her 12-year-old grandson from school and said after hearing about Murphy's arrest, she'll be having a conversation with her grandson.
"I always tell him if something happens at school, tell granny, she'll take care of it," Price said.
No other potential victims have been identified, but the Sheriff’s Office is asking parents and guardians to talk with their children and report any information about additional incidents to police. The detectives can be reached at 386-323-3574, or through Crime Stoppers of Northeast Florida at 888-277-TIPS.
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