Teacher who faces prison over accusations of sex with her student says she loves him
It would be fair to say that for a lot of high school students, the idea of sleeping with one of your teachers is something of a pipe dream. At the time, you genuinely believe it might happen, but as you grow into your mid-twenties, you begin to realise why it never would. But, for some students, it does happen, and for the teachers that are involved, it can land them in some serious trouble.
One person who knows all too well what the ramifications of engaging in sexual conduct with a student are, is Tayler Boncal. Boncal, who was a 22-year-old teacher and track coach at Conard High School in Connecticut when she began a relationship with an 18-year-old male student.
She is currently facing charges of three counts of second-degree sexual assault as is awaiting her next appearance in court. If she is convicted, Boncal will serve at least nine months in jail, with the maximum sentence being 10 years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine per charge.
However, despite the fact that she may be facing time, neither the boy nor his parents want to see Boncal charged for the incident. When the teacher and the student engaged in the relationship, there wasn't much of an age gap, with him being 18 and Boncal 21.
According to her arrest warrant, Boncal had expressed her feelings toward the boy, saying that she was in love with him:
"She stated that the victim was kind to her. Boncal stated that she loved the victim and was emotional regarding her feelings for him.
"She expressed concern for the victim and was worried he would get in trouble."
The arrest warrant also revealed that the student had initially pursued Boncal, asking the teacher for her number. The pair then began dating, with them exchanging explicit text messages and photos for an extended period of time. According to the police, the relationship then turned physical around Christmas time when the boy went to Boncal's home.
The boy told police that the couple had intercourse three more times before January 11. The next day he was called into the principal's office and, after initially denying the affair, admitted to it, but said that he didn't want Boncal getting in trouble.
In a statement to parents and guardians on behalf of the school, principal Julio Duarte said:
"The safety and well-being of all students is and will always be my number one priority. I know that there have been rumours amongst students these past few weeks.
Now that the police action has concluded, I am able to inform you of an incident that I was made aware of between a former student teacher/assistant coach and a student.
Once I received the misconduct complaint, I immediately informed the police and launched an investigation. While I cannot comment on the specifics of the investigation, I can tell you that this person no longer works at Conard."
"The incident did not occur on our campus and I have been working closely with both the New Britain and West Hartford Police Departments to ensure that this individual is held accountable for their actions.
"As educators, we are entrusted to protect and educate all of our students and know there are certain boundaries that can never be crossed. Also, we will not tolerate any behaviour that compromises the safety or well-being of our students.
"I hope you will not let the misconduct of this one individual cast a shadow over all of our staff members who demonstrate their commitment to our students every day."
While it's no doubt stupid of Boncal to become involved with a student, he was 18 and she was 21. Does she deserve jail time for consensual sex with an adult?