A former Bengals cheerleader left court today hand-in-hand with the student she admitted to having a sexual relationship with after avoiding jail.
Sarah Jones, 27, pleaded guilty to having sex with the 17-year-old student at a Kentucky school where she was a teacher. She also admitted to sexual misconduct and custodial interference.
In a tearful admission, Jones told the court today: 'I began a romantic relationship while he was a student and I was in a position of authority.'
She left court in Covington with her former student but her lawyer would not comment on the nature
Jones said the relationship began in February 2011 when the boy was 17, saying that the two had sex, that she sent him sexually explicit text messages and lied about the relationship to police.
In accepting the plea agreement, Judge Patricia Summe granted prosecutors' recommendation to sentence Jones to five years of diversion but no jail time, and she won't have to register as a sex offender. The diversion requires Jones to report to a probation officer, and undergo drug tests.
The former student cannot be named or identified because he is the victim of a sex crime.
Prosecutors said they made the deal because the teenager, now 18, and his family were uncooperative with them and sided with his former teacher.
Part of the reason defense attorney Eric Deters said Jones was willing to plead guilty was because the judge had denied his request to keep the text messages that she sent to the teen out of the trial.
'They're embarrassing,' Deters told reporters after the hearing. 'They were steamy.
He also said that now that the teenage is 18 years old, he and Jones 'are free to be together' and pointed out that they left the courtroom together.
Deters declined to discuss details of their current relationship, saying that they likely would do that themselves at some point in the future.
The attorney said that Jones will not try out to be a Bengals cheerleader in the future, and that for now, she's working as a legal assistant in his office.
Jones has expressed interest in becoming a lawyer and was studying to take the Law School Admission Test, he said.
The 27-year-old had taught at Dixie Heights High School before resigning last November. She was indicted in March. A trial in the case had been set to start on Wednesday.
She agreed to never again take a teaching or coaching job as part of the plea deal. The disgraced teacher can have the felony custodial interference charge wiped from her record.
To read more about this story CLICK HERE.