What to Know
- Steven Tori, who is an English teacher at Seminole Ridge High School in Loxahatchee, was charged with 20 counts about the incident.
- Police say the student told investigators the two began exchanging text messages that included nude photos and suggestive wording.
A Palm Beach County high school teacher is behind bars after police say he was involved in a romantic relationship with a 17-year-old student.
Steven Tori, who is an English teacher at Seminole Ridge High School in Loxahatchee, was charged with eight counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor and 12 counts of transmission of harmful material.
According to an arrest report obtained by NBC affiliate WPTV, the relationship between the 28-year-old Tori and the female victim started when she wrote a poem about being sexually assaulted for a writing club at the school. Tori told authorities, but reportedly felt obligated to serve as a mentor for her.
Police say the student told investigators the two began exchanging text messages that included nude photos and suggestive wording before performing sex acts on each other both inside Tori’s classroom and in his car when Tori would give the student a ride home between March and May of this year. The student later told investigators she fell in love with Tori.
Tori, who denied the allegations to investigators, was ordered not to have contact with the victim, any witnesses or anyone from the school other than the principal by a judge during Tuesday’s hearing. His lawyer said the relationship was consensual and that the student initiated it at the beginning.
Palm Beach County School District officials said they cannot comment on Tori’s job status pending the outcome of the case.