A Pennsylvania teacher has been arrested and charged with a sex crime for allegedly having sex with a minor student.
Barbara Corbo, 30, is charged with unlawful contact with a minor, institutional sexual assault and corruption of minors. Although the teacher hails from Plymouth Meeting - a census-designated place that straddles Plymouth and Whitemarsh Townships in Montgomery County, Pennsylvania - she was charged in Philadelphia, where the alleged offense took place.
Corbo Sexually Assaulted the Student in a Car Along Kelly Drive
According to the Philadelphia Police Department, Corbo was arrested on Wed., Feb. 9, 2022 over an incident that allegedly occurred on Dec. 11, 2021 along Kelly Drive in Philadelphia. The educator allegedly engaged in sexual acts with the 17-year-old boy in the car on the popular street, police said.
Under Keystone State law, Corbo is accused of three third-degree felonies. If convicted as charged, she could face a maximum 21-year prison sentence, though maximum sentences are generally unlikely.
Although Corbo's LinkedIn page has her listed as a teaching assistant at Benchmark School, local news outlet 6ABC reported that the teacher was employed with the Mercy Career and Technical High School â a Catholic high school in Philadelphia.
School Fired Corbo After Victim Reported the 'Inappropriate Sexual Contact'
The school authorities released a statement obtained by the outlet saying the student came forward and reported the "inappropriate sexual contact" on Jan. 18. Corbo was fired on the same day and reported to local law enforcement, the school said.
"Members of the Mercy Career & Technical High School Community: Regretfully, we write to share the difficult news that an English/Social Studies teacher at our school was arrested earlier today on criminal charges for engaging in inappropriate sexual contact with a student. The reported conduct constitutes a gross violation of the ethical and moral responsibilities and commitments of an educator and is a violation of school policy," the school said in its statement.
"We learned about this matter on Tuesday, January 18th, when a student reported to the school that Ms. Barbara Corbo engaged in inappropriate sexual contact with the student at a location outside of school," the statement continued. "On the same day, we immediately terminated her employment, restricted her ability to communicate with students, and reported the conduct to local law enforcement and child protective services."
Mercy High School also noted that Corbo was hired in August of 2021 as an English and Social Studies teacher after submitting clear criminal background checks, child abuse clearances, professional references, and a copy of her Commonwealth of Pennsylvania Professional Certificate, which are standard screening practices while recruiting teachers.
The school said it would provide the student who came forward with "emotional and academic support" and asked parents to urge their children to respect the student's privacy and refrain from speculation and conjecture.
"As a Catholic school in the Mercy tradition, the welfare of all the young people entrusted in our care remains our focus. We will employ our own school counseling staff and outside resources to respond to the needs and concerns of all students," the statement concluded.