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Dale Pennington, of Ridge Community High School, has been charged with "sexting" former student

5:31 PM, Sep 6, 2012   |    comments
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 PDF Document: Dale Pennington affidavit

Winter Haven, Florida - The messages that a Polk County teacher allegedly sent to one of his former students, a 16-year-old girl, are so graphic that even the Sheriff calls it "XXX-rated."

"Do you know I'm just to the point of being numb?  You know, I don't believe, once again... you have thousands upon thousands of teachers doing a great job molding our youth. And then you have this misfit," said Sheriff Grady Judd.

Judd is calling 36-year-old high school history teacher Dale Pennington a "deviant" and disgusting. Pennington was arrested for sexting a teenage student with explicit messages and nude pictures of himself, deputies say.

Read: Dale Pennington's arrest affidavit WARNING: Extremely graphic!

Pennington had his first court appearance on Thursday afternoon.  He faces 47 charges, including the use of a computer to seduce a child.   The judge issued a $5,000 bond in the case.

Sheriff Judd told reporters, "It's just outrageous to all of us.  Quite frankly, if you're in a position of authority, you are number one on our list if you violate the law."

Judd admits that he can't believe that "this has happened again in Central Florida," a teacher busted for inappropriate behavior.   According to documents, the teacher sent fully nude pictures of himself to the teen and she sent nude pictures as well.

"We said this in jest, that we have to set up a jail cell for school teachers now and house them together," Judd commented.

So, how did this Ridge Community High School teacher get caught? 

Someone tipped off the sheriff's office that the two had been "sexting since May."   

When Pennington was arrested, Judd says, the teacher told them everything, in explicit detail, asking the deputies, "not to be mad at him, that this teenager was mature."

Sheriff Judd vehemently disagrees.  "She's 16 years old, still a child, and she's very much a child. You can see that from the ramblings in their email," he points out.

The teacher and his student never had sex, but arrest records show they were planning on it.   The arrest report reveals that the two planned "to drink whiskey behind Publix" before doing the deed.   

The sheriff says Pennington even sent the student a porno video depicting a dad and a babysitter as an example of what "they" would do.  

As for Pennington's wife, she let him sit behind bars.  The sheriff described her reaction, "'I don't even need to know what the charges are, I have no intention of getting him out!'"

Pennington has only been a teacher for two years.  Before that, records show, he worked at Disney.  

He has no children.

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