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Former Miss Texas Contestant Amy McElhenney arrested for allegedly having sex with her 18 year old Student

June 12th, 2006

Former Miss Texas Contestant  Amy McElhenney arrested for allegedly having sex with her 18 year old Student


Amy McElhenney, 25, was arrested on May 25th due to allegations of having sex with an 18 year old student with whom she teaching.  McElhenney is a high school Spanish teacher in Carrollton, near Dallas.  She also participated in a 2002 Miss Texas contest.

Due to the new laws in Texas that make it a crime to have sex in student-teacher relationship even thought the student was 18 years old.  McElhenney faces up to a 20 year sentence if convicted.

There is debate with some lawmakers that say since the student was of legal age it should make McElhenney exempt of the felony charge.  According to Chron.com the State Rep. Helen Giddings, D-Dallas, intended the 2003 Texas criminal felony law to apply to student-teacher sexual relationships with 17 year olds and younger.  Comment on this article at our Forum

Unfortunately, other legislators added amendments that made student-teacher sex illegal at any age.  The debate of McElhenney case is that she had sex with an 18 year old that was of legal age.  Is the student at this point just as guilty?  At this time reports do not say that McElhenney was aware that the student-teacher law pertained to all ages including 18 year olds.

Parents fear if the law does not include 18 year olds that teachers will prey on the senior class students with sexual advances.  The jury will have to decide on this case and it may change legislation in the future.  If they sentence McElhenney for this crime it will make an example to other teachers not to behave in this manner.  The real question is if an 18 year old is old enough to vote and go to war, then is this really a child that needs protecting?

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Nicole Wilson
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