LABELLE, FL. -- According to NBC 2 in Fort Myers, a LaBelle Middle School teacher has been arrested and charged with lewd molestation after police say he fondled a 12-year-old boy in a movie theater.
The Lake Wales Police Department says 32-year-old Derreck Sepp contacted the boy on MySpace. Sepp and the boy reportedly met at a movie theater on March 15. Police reportedly said the boy told his parents and the parents then filed a complaint.
During the movie, police said Sepp kissed the boy and reached inside his pants. The report said the boy also fondled Sepp.
Detectives then set up another date with Sepp for April 2 at the mall where the theater is located. There were seven undercover officers from the Lake Wales Police Department watching at about 4 p.m. when Sepp arrived at the mall and approached the boy, who was sitting on a bench outside the theater.
When Sepp showed up, police arrested him. He is in the Polk county jail. The investigation is ongoing and more charges may be filed against Sepp. Bond has been set at $300,000.
Sepp was appointed to teach at the LaBelle Middle School by the Hendry School Board effective August 13, 2007. He was certified on June 1, 2007 to teach grades K-6, and teach general science and mathematics for grades 5-9. Sepp may find himself in danger of losing his teaching credentials if found in violation of the law.
The LaBelle teacher came from Washington state and his parents live in Bellingham, Wa.
Only one Hendry teacher has faced teaching certificate disciplining action in recent years. Joseph W. Muniz settled with the State last year and agreed to an agreement that he pay a $100.00 fine, receive a letter of reprimand, and be on probation for two years.
In Glades county, Daniel P. Slayton's teaching license was revoked permanently in 1999.