Mom says she complained about Lakeland teacher facing sex charge - WFLA News Channel 8

Mom says she complained about Lakeland teacher facing sex charges

Posted: Updated:
Jennifer Christine Fichter, 29, is charged with 6 counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor. Polk Co. Jail booking photo Jennifer Christine Fichter, 29, is charged with 6 counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor. Polk Co. Jail booking photo
An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations. An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations.
An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations. An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations.
An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations. An image of one of Jennifer Fichter's text conversations.
Mother Abby Roche says she complained to law enforcement about  Jennifer Fichter last school year Mother Abby Roche says she complained to law enforcement about Jennifer Fichter last school year

A Polk County judge set bond for Jennifer Fichter, a high school teacher facing sex charges, at $70,000 Wednesday.

That’s $10,000 for each of the seven counts of unlawful sexual activity with a minor in Polk County. Among restrictions if she posts bond, she is to have no contact with the victim of whom she claims to love.

She is also to stay away from anyone under age 18 and abide by a curfew.

Fichter faces three additional counts in Hillsborough County with no bond.

The punishment should have come a long time ago, according to a Polk County mother who filed a complaint about the teacher nearly two years ago.

Summer lunch, a shopping trip and 2:00 AM casual messaging on social media. Abby Roche says her son corresponded with Fichter, his former English teacher, on social media late at night, and even met her for lunch with a group of friends in 2012.

“The kids called her “Jen,” Roche said.

The concerns led her to take a stack of Facebook messages she deemed inappropriate to law enforcement ---expecting change at Central Florida Aerospace Academy.

“I assumed that she was going to be removed as a teacher immediately just based on the inappropriate conversation,” Roche said.

The Polk County Sheriff's Office found nothing criminal about the behavior, but according to the report, the investigator spoke to the school's assistant principal who allegedly met with Fichter and placed a letter referencing the case in her file.

Manny Rodriguez, Personnel Investigator with Polk County Public Schools, refused to acknowledge or discuss the 2012 incident Wednesday.

He responded to our questions with a prepared statement that said the district was fully cooperating with law enforcement and the superintendent recommends the school board terminate Fichter.

Fast-forward to this week, and Fichter is in front of a judge, all because of an alleged affair with a student that brought on multiple sex charges.

Fichter told a Lakeland Police Department detective that she and the 17-year-old victim had sex between 20-30 times between November and April.

According to her claims, the victim got her pregnant and they together chose to abort the baby. Fichter told police her only regret in the relationship was the abortion.

Abby Roche believes it’s all damage that could have been avoided, had someone taken her 2012 concerns seriously.

“Just based on the conversation, that should have been an immediate dismissal,” Roche said.

As of Wednesday afternoon, Fichter was still in the Polk County Jail. She is expected to be transported to Hillsborough County as early as Thursday.

This post will be updated as more details are released.

Copyright 2014 WFLA. All rights reserved.



  • Most Viewed Stories on WFLA.com

  • Sign up for WFLA News Channel 8 Email Alerts

    * denotes required fields






    Thank you for signing up! You will receive a confirmation email shortly.
Powered by WorldNow

200 South Parker Street, Tampa, FL 33606

Telephone: 813.228.8888
Fax: 813.225.2770
Email: news@wfla.com

Can’t find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.