Crime

December 14, 2013

Sheriff's Office report: Island teacher admitted inappropriate behavior with student

A Hilton Head Island High School substitute teacher admitted she sent an inappropriate picture to a student, kissed him and asked him to buy marijuana for her, according to a Beaufort County Sheriff's Office report released Saturday.

A Hilton Head Island High School substitute teacher admitted she sent an inappropriate picture to a student, kissed him and asked him to buy marijuana for her, according to a Beaufort County Sheriff's Office report released Saturday.

Margaret Ann LaMantia, 23, was charged Tuesday with contributing to the delinquency of a minor and disseminating harmful material to a minor, according to the jail log.

During an investigation of the incident, LaMantia, a long-term Spanish substitute at the school, told deputies she and a 16-year-old male student in her class began talking around Nov. 25. They continued communicating through social media over Thanksgiving break, according to the report on the incident.

She admitted to using the SnapChat phone application to send him a risque picture because the student "was persistent and kept asking for it," the report said. She told deputies she was unsure if she sent him other "inappropriate" pictures.

The app allows photos to be viewed for a few seconds before they are deleted. However, the student reportedly saved several pictures from LaMantia using the application SnapCapture, which does not alert the sender their images are being saved.

After Thanksgiving, the two began talking in LaMantia's classroom after school, sometimes about marijuana and sex, the report said.

She allegedly offered to tutor him, the student told the Sheriff's Office.

LaMantia told deputies she may have "alluded" that something could happen between them.

On Dec. 6, LaMantia allegedly asked the student to buy her marijuana for a friend who was going away, the report said.

About 6:30 p.m., she picked him up from his job and the two drove to Folly Field Beach to talk, the student told deputies. There, the two kissed for a few seconds and the student briefly touched LaMantia over her clothes, she told deputies. The student said he asked for oral sex, which she refused, the report said.

LaMantia told him they were not "going to do this," and dropped the student off at his parent's house about 9 p.m., according to the report.

The student, however, told officers she invited him to a party in Georgia, stating, "If you go to the party with me, we can spend some time alone."

On Tuesday, the student's father learned his son had been fired from his job because his employer smelled marijuana, the report said. The 16 year old then informed his dad of the Dec. 6 incident, prompting the man to file a report with the school resource officer.

LaMantia, who is no longer an employee of the Beaufort County School District, remained in the Beaufort County Detention Center on Saturday,with bail set at a total of $25,000.

The district completed its own investigation of the incident, but reached Thursday, spokesman Jim Foster would not provide details.

The Sheriff's Office initially declined to release the full report, citing its ongoing investigation.

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