American dance teacher given 26-year jail sentence for having sex with her 15-year old female student

Lauren Debenedetta, a 41-year old dance teacher has been found guilty on four counts of lewd and lascivious battery on a minor — her 15-year-old student.

Debenedetta is reported to have engaged in an inappropriate relationship with the student that lasted several weeks in 2016.

The girl’s stepdad caught them in her bedroom as he was checking up on his daughter, who had stayed home for a sick day.

Court documents showed Debenedetta called the student after learning she was staying home for the day, asking if she could come over.

The victim told police the relationship started as soon as the girl started classes at Debenedetta’s dance studio, Haven Dance.

A court heard how Debenedetta would call the teen into her office during class and would “kiss her on her mouth” and “touch her private parts”.

After serving her time, Debenedetta will be on sex offender probation for five years.

The Author

Chinenye Nwabueze

Nwabueze is a communication researcher with several years of lecturing experience in Nigerian universities.

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