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Barstow High School teacher accused of sex crimes involving student

Barstow High School teacher accused of sex crimes involving student
Authorities say teacher Katherine O'Neill was having an inappropriate sexual relationship with a teenage girl. (San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department)

A high school teacher was arrested last week on suspicion of sex crimes involving a female student, according to the San Bernardino County Sheriff’s Department.

Katherine O’Neill, 51, was arrested a day after authorities received a report that the Barstow High School teacher was having an inappropriate relationship with a 16-year-old student, according to sheriff’s officials. O’Neill posted $100,000 bail and was released from custody Saturday.

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After interviewing the student and others, detectives determined that O’Neill did have an intimate relationship with the girl and had sent explicit text messages that contained obscene material, said Jodi Miller, a spokeswoman for the Sheriff’s Department.

O’Neill was booked on suspicion of sending harmful matter to a minor, annoying and molesting a minor, oral copulation with a minor and penetration with a foreign object. Charges have not been filed with the San Bernardino County district attorney’s office, spokeswoman Kimberly Fuller said.

O’Neill taught U.S. government and history at Barstow High, according to the school’s website. She was placed on administrative leave in October, sheriff’s officials said. School officials could not immediately be reached for comment Tuesday.

Investigators think there may be other victims in the case. Anyone with information can call (909) 387-3615.

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