Saturday, June 8, 2013

Christina Preston Gets 25 Years in Prison for Child Sex Crimes

Christina Preston, 45-year-old former teacher at Veterans Memorial Middle School,Columbus, Georgia, who was accused of moths long sexual relationship with a 13-year-old male student was sentenced to at least 25 years in prison after being found guilty of sex crime charges.

A Georgia jury found a former special education teacher guilty on multiple charges based on a months-long affair she had with a student. Preston was convicted of aggravated child molestation, child molestation, statutory rape and sexual assault on a person in custody. She was sentenced to life in prison with 25 years to serve before she is eligible for parole. When she is released, Preston will spend the rest of her life on probation and have to register as a sex offender. Superior Court Judge John Allen also barred her from having contact with any minors other than her own children and having any contact with the victim, who is now 15.

The victim of Christina Preston testified earlier this week about the sexual relationship that began after Mrs Preston initiated it on Halloween 2011, when the victim was 13 and went on for months until Preston was arrested in February after investigators caught her in car with a 14-year-old boy. Preston initially faced two counts of child molestation and one count each of enticing a child for indecent purposes and sexual assault against persons in custody, records state. Police found female techer in company of a young boy in a car about 12:30 a.m. Jan. 29, 2012 at Cooper Creek Park, 4816 Milgen Road.

A former seventh-grader testified this week about the incidents during the night deputies caught him and his special-education teacher in her car in Columbus’ Cooper Creek Park. Teen boy who is now 15-year-old, told prosecutor Don Kelly that he and Mrs. Preston had spent the afternoon riding four-wheelers along a power easement off Hancock Road. Later they washed the vehicles off, joined a family celebration at the teacher’s house, left together to buy food and then went to the park in Preston’s vehicle, a Ford Expedition. Preston parked in an unlighted spot on the park’s northeast corner, where they ate before she asked him to get in the back seat with her. She pulled off the boy's pants, fondled him and performed oral sex, and then they had intercourse, the victim told. After having sex their were sitting in the front seat about 12:30 a.m. when sheriff’s deputies checking the park shined a spotlight on the Expedition, and stopped to ask why they were in a park that closed hours ago. Preston told deputies that the 14-year-old boy was her daughter’s boyfriend, and they had stopped to eat and she was driving him home after a day of four-wheeling. She also told them that the boy's parents were aware of this this, and it was common practice. But the teenager was unable to give deputies a telephone number or address for his parents, explaining they had just moved. That made them suspicious. The boy’s story changed when a deputy visited the teen’s parents the next day. The boy would not make eye contact and was fidgeting nervously. Then he began to cry, and would answer no more questions. Then the boy said he and his teacher had sex in the park.

In court this week the young boy testified that the sex acts with his teacher in park was not the only time. He listed sexual encounters that included one at Muscogee’s Veterans Memorial Middle School, where Preston was among his teachers.

The sexual encounters had started Halloween 2011, when he had helped hand out candy at what was then Preston’s Springridge Drive home. She was to drive him back to his home off Moon Road, but instead stopped elsewhere in his neighborhood. “She started touching on me,” he said, adding that she fondled his genitals asking if he ever had had sex and if he liked what she was doing to him. Preston also told the boy that she liked him a lot, "a lot more than she was supposed". After fondling the boy for some time she finally took him home. Some time later they had a similar encounter at school in what at the time was a windowless conference room adjacent to the school’s library . There she kissed him and again fondled his genitals. “She used her tongue,” he said of the kissing.

He said occasions they had full sexual intercourse included:

• Once in her Springridge Drive home, in bedroom.

• Once when they were riding four-wheelers off Hancock Road, where she disrobed but he did not, and they had sex on the ground.

• Once on “hunting land” belonging to her husband’s family in Marion County, where they went to ride four-wheelers before having sex in a deer stand.

Preston’s estranged husband described the deer stand during his testimony, saying he and his wife had built it just for her. It was 4 by 8 feet long, and they named it “Cristie’s Condo,” he said. Husband had been working for the sheriff’s office from 1987 through 1998, and still had friends there. One told him about the Cooper Creek Park report later that same day, he said. Having heard nothing about that from his wife, he went home, packed his belongings and moved out. He filed for divorce Feb. 1, 2012.

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