Police: Third teen claims sex with Lakeland teacher - FOX 13 News

Police: Third teen claims sex with Lakeland teacher

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Photo courtesy PCSO. Photo courtesy PCSO.
LAKELAND (FOX 13) -

The Lakeland Police Department now says a third boy has claimed he had sex with a Polk County teacher.

Sgt Gary Gross of the Lakeland Police Department says he expects that there are more victims, but they won't be easy to find.

"We know that men are more reluctant to come forward if they are a victim of sexual battery," Gross told FOX 13.

Yesterday, detectives filed 20 charges against Jennifer Fichter, who was already behind bars for an alleged relationship with a 17-year-old Central Florida Aerospace Academy.

A second former student had come forward, claiming that he and Fichter had a sexual relationship that lasted from October 2011 to May 2012. The unnamed man says he was also 17 back when he and Fichter would get together both at her apartment and his own home when his mother was away.

Now, detectives say they are investigating claims by a third victim, who is also a student at Central Florida Aerospace Academy in his late teens.

"This is a teacher who is a classic predator who decides to let students call her by her first name. She wanted to get on their level. She wanted to be one of them," said Gross. "When you're chatting and talking to someone at 2 in the morning, that's a red flag."

Fichter, 29, remains in the Polk County Jail. On Thursday, she was schedule to appear in court to face the latest charges. Her attorney did not show up and the judge rescheduled the hearing until Friday.

The director of victim services for Peace River Center, which treats sex abuse victims in Polk County, says Fichter's alleged behavior has all the trademarks of a sex predator.

"Our kids are taught to trust those people, when they do, they start out with the trust, their trust is manipulated."

Sheryl Schwab says predators groom in patterns.

One affidavidt says Fichter started with keeping a child after school, then progressed to texting, having him over, cuddling and sex.

All the victims were 17.

Fichter, 29, allegedly told police she was in love with one of them.

"An adolescent, they're very easily taken to the next step," said Schwab.

Fichter previously resigned from a school in Orange County under similar suspicions.

If you count that, this woman's son, and the three victims police have publicly commented on, there are at least five targets.

What could the impact on them be?

"(They could have) Lack of trust, dififculty in establishing other intimate relationships after being manipulated and abused and assaulted," said Schwab.



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