Laura Amero, 35, was indicted on sexual battery and intimidation of a witness Monday, but she denied all charges in an Ohio court
School superintendent was accused having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old student and attempting to do so with another while she was principal
She also, ‘tried to have sex with 17-year-old student and threatened them before police found out’
Alleged incidents were between September 2015 and May 2017 with Windham Junior-Senior High School students
She was promoted in February but was put on paid leave in April
Wednesday the school board suspended her without pay pending investigation
Pretrial hearing is scheduled for May 31 and she was released on $350,000 bond
Schools Superintendent Laura Amero is accused of engaging in sexual conduct with a 17-year-old student. She was indicted for sexual battery and attempted sexual battery, Monday.
The Ohio school superintendent was charged Monday with having a sexual relationship with a 16-year-old student and attempting to do so with another at Windham Junior-Senior High School, then threatening them if they spoke out.
Amero, 35, was indicted on two third-degree felony counts of sexual battery, two fourth-degree felony counts of attempted sexual battery and she pleaded guilty to all via video.
The charges stem from alleged incidents between February and May 2017 with a 16-year-old student who is now 18.
The second set of charges occurred between September 2015 and May 2016 with another student, a 17-year-old who is now 19.
She was also charged with two first-degree misdemeanor counts of intimidation of a crime victim or witness which allegedly occurred March 28.
She was indicted on two third-degree felony counts of sexual battery, two fourth-degree felony counts of attempted sexual battery Monday as well as, two counts of intimidation of a witness alleged to have occurred March 28
Amero joined Windham as principal in 2015 but was promoted to superintendent of Windham Exempted Village Schools February 1 on a three and half year contract for $96,500.
She has been on paid administrative leave since April 1 when the Windham Board of Education was notified of alleged misconduct.
The Record-Courier reports that the Board of Education President Darryl McGuire believes law enforcement brought the matter to the school district’s attention.
The district said in a statement: ‘The Windham Exempted Village Schools will continue to cooperate as requested by law enforcement.’
In a Wednesday meeting the board decided to suspend Amero in a unanimous vote. It was decided during the 14-minute meeting that she will not be paid while the case is pending.
McGuire said there was nothing alarming on her record when they hired her, Fox 8 reported.
Prior to her elevation, she taught English at Western Reserve High School in Mahoning County under Principal Jeff Zatchok.
Her file from the school is largely positive but part of her 2009-2010 school year evaluation says she could ‘work to maintain a solid boundary between student/teacher differences’.
Married for a year to the principal’s son Jacob Zatchok in 2012. The marriage ended in divorce a year later. Jacob Zatchok who is listed as working at Western Reserve High School remarried in 2018.
The year of her marriage 2012 she was praised for her engaged students, class management and organization in a peer evaluation.
The improper contacts with students occurred at Windham Junior-Senior High School in Ohio [photo]
She was put on paid leave in April while former Superintendent Gregg Isler has returned to Windham as acting superintendent.
Following Wednesday’s meeting Board President Darryl McGuire said: ‘We can bring in counselors but right now we haven’t seen that problem. The acting superintendent is on top of that with the principals and are working on that issue, but our main focus is concentrating on education.’
A pretrial hearing is scheduled for May 31 in Portage County Common Pleas Court. Amero was released on $350,000 bond.