Teacher’s aide at St. James High charged with sexual battery with a student

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HORRY COUNTY, S.C. (WBTW) – A teacher’s aide at St. James High School has been charged with sexual battery with a student after a report of an alleged relationship that happened in 2018. 

Horry County police said they were contacted by the Horry County Schools district on Aug. 5 and were told a former student was involved in a sexual relationship with a teacher. Police said they were able to contact the former student to meet to discuss the incident. 

Richard Spiegel, 46, of Murrells Inlet, was charged with sexual battery with a student and booked into jail on Tuesday as a result of the investigation. Spiegel was a special education teacher’s aide, according to police warrants.

An Horry County Schools official verified the district received an allegation “of inappropriate behavior and contact between a teacher’s aide at St. James High School and a former student, which allegedly took place several years ago.”

An immediate investigation began by district officials and law enforcement, according to Lisa Bourcier, director of strategic communication & community engagement. The staff member was arrested and placed on administrative leave, Bourcier added.

“Such behavior is highly troubling and violates the public trust and the safety and welfare of our students,” Bourcier said. “We commend district officials and local law enforcement who responded quickly in investigating these allegations once it was brought to their attention.”

The abuse happened at a gas station in the Murrells Inlet area, according to an arrest warrant.

Spiegel was booked at the J. Reuben Long Detention Center and released Tuesday on a $2,000 bond.

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