A Pennsylvania teacher has been charged with multiple sex crimes for allegedly having an intimate relationship with a 16-year-old student whom she was “obsessed” with, the Daily Local News reports.
Melissa Bonkoski, 38, bought a so-called burner phone — a disposable cell phone — so she could secretly arrange trysts with the boy.
During those encounters, Bonkoski would allegedly let the boy fondle her breasts and kiss her in her car, according to investigators. The two also would talk about oral sex, even though they did not engage in it, and they slept in the same bed together at her house.
Police became involved when they received a complaint in March alleging that the teen was receiving “harassing” text messages from the teacher. The boy was reportedly concerned that he would not be able to get rides home from her anymore if he didn’t stop kissing her.
While the teen said he had tried to cut off contact with Bonkoski, she continued to pursue him. In one text message to the boy, Bonkoski said she desperately wanted to maintain the relationship.
“Whatever you do, please don’t shut me out,” Bonkoski wrote in the text message. “I’m begging you.”
The teacher later admitted the relationship to authorities and told them she thought she was being clever by using the burner phone. But police were able to trace the phone account to her and show that her calls were coming from near her home and the school, according to court records.
On Thursday, Bonkoski was formally charged with felony institutional sexual assault, corruption of minors, unlawful use of a communications facility and unlawful contact with a minor.
She has been arraigned and released on $80,000 bail, the newspaper reports.
Bonkoski has resigned from her teaching position at Owen J. Roberts High School in South Coventry, Pennsylvania, where she had taught earth science for two years. She previously taught in Miami and West Philadelphia.
[Feature Photo: Chester County District Attorney’s Office]