Allegedly filmed girls changing clothes.
One week after turning in his resignation from the Booneville School District, teacher/coach Mark Aaron Smith was formally charged with 11 counts of video voyeurism.
Smith, 39, stands accused of placing a cellular phone in record mode, inside a soap dispenser in a girls bathroom area inside the fieldhouse on the Booneville High School campus.
After the phone was discovered, according to an arrest warrant affidavit, Smith confirmed the phone was his and gave school officials the pass-code but told them he had no knowledge of how the phone came to be in the girls bathroom.
School officials disagreed and turned the phone over to police investigators who believe they identified Smith as the person placing the phone in the soap dispenser. Smith is also believed to have downloaded a video of the same bathroom to his school computer.
According to the affidavit, captured on the video on the phone were 11 girls ages 13 to 17 who were changing clothes.
Smith is free on a $30,000 bond, which was posted immediately after an arrest warrant was served and he was booked at the Logan County Detention Center in Paris, according to Logan County Sheriff Boyd Hicks.
According to a document obtained by the Booneville Democrat through a Freedom of Information Act request, Smith resigned his position with the Booneville School District. Smith’s single sentence resignation letter is dated Sept. 1, and has an effective date of Sept. 22.
Contracts for school employees for the current school year are not available on a school district website but in the 2016-2017 school year Smith was contracted as a teacher/coach and was paid $48,289.64.
In a prepared statement after the story broke Parrish said, “The Booneville School District is aware of an incident involving a staff member that occurred on campus on Aug. 30. … The District is fully cooperating with all outside investigations, and parents of affected students have been notified. The safety of our students is our number one priority, which is evidenced by the swift action the district took when the incident became known.”
Female students in grades 7-12 have been offered counseling, Parrish said in Tuesday’s statement.