POLK COUNTY, Fla. – A middle school teacher is behind bars after authorities say she had sexual relations with a juvenile.
Detectives from the Polk County Sheriff’s Office arrested 49-year-old Leslie Bushart of Lakeland Thursday.
“During her arrest, she told detectives that she has been a teacher for 29 years. Please refer all inquiries regarding her employment to the Polk County School Board,” officials said.
The investigation into the teacher began on June 16 after the boy’s parents contacted the Polk County Sheriff’s Office.
“They reported that the incident occurred on June 6th during a graduation party for the victim’s older sister,” deputies said.
During the graduation party, Bushart told another person that she had just performed oral sex on the teenage victim, the arrest affidavit said.
“That person then informed the mother of the victim. The mother confronted Bushart, who then quickly left the party,” deputies said.
According to PCSO, Bushart later reached out to the victim’s mother on Facebook and tried to rationalize her behavior by saying she was drunk at the party.
When detectives met with Bushart, she confessed to the crime, deputies said.
“She told them that she and the boy walked away from the crowd together and she attempted to smoke marijuana but was so drunk that she couldn’t get it lit. At that point, she began performing oral sex on the victim,” a news release said.
Bushart was booked into the Polk County Jail, charged with lewd battery.
“Leslie Bushart victimized a teenage boy. She betrayed her profession, as well as her friends during what was supposed to be a very special day. There is technically one victim in this case, but the entire family and school community have suffered from this,” said Polk County Sheriff Grady Judd.