Update: Judge Dismisses Charges Against Teacher Based On Evidence
A judge dismissed charges against a 26-year-old former Prue teacher accused of having a sexual relationship with one of her students.
Katie Hightower, resident of Terlton, appeared before a Pawnee County district judge Tuesday afternoon for her preliminary hearing. There, the judge dismissed her charges, which included second degree rape and furnishing an alcoholic beverage to a person under 21.
On Tuesday, prosecutors presented their evidence against Hightower. The judge then deemed there was not enough evidence to move forward with the case.
Court records also show that on the charge of furnishing an alcoholic beverage to a person under 21, Hightower would be absolved due to the charge being for high-point beer. Hightower allegedly provided low-point beer to her former students.
A Pawnee County court clerk told KTUL.com that if prosecutors wished, they could charge Hightower with a misdemeanor for providing her students with alcohol.
Her case began back in October when Channel 8 and KTUL.com reported that an arrest warrant was issued for Hightower. That was after two students at Prue High School approached an officer with written statements regarding her relationship with a 16-year-old boy.
In the affidavit, the two students described an incident that occurred back in August after a football scrimmage. They told officers that Hightower rode with them on the bus to the scrimmage and during their trip back home, she sat next to the 16-year-old boy where one of the students could hear them talking about hanging out after school.
In their statements, during the drive to Hightower's home, both students said she called the boy "babe" and laid her head on his lap during the ride.
After dropping off the boy's vehicle at his house, the students said Hightower purchased them pizza and beer at a Walmart and then proceeded to her home.
According to an affidavit, once at her home, the students consumed the pizza and beer but grew tired after Hightower and the boy disappeared to her bedroom and had sexual intercourse.
The students told officials that they could hear Hightower and the boy having sexual intercourse in her bedroom and left her residence.
Back in October, Hightower was release on $50,000 bond from the Pawnee County Jail. During her arraignment on Oct. 23, she pleaded not guilty to the charges she is facing.