Jun 3, 2010 2:29 PM by Letitia Walker
FBI agents have arrested a former counselor at Ascension Episcopal School in Lafayette who is accused of trying to entice a student to engage in sexual activity.
Special Agent Sheila Thorne, an FBI spokeswoman in New Orleans, said that FBI agents from Lafayette and Hattiesburg, Miss., arrested Allison Hargrave at the Pine Grove Behavioral Help and Addiction Services in Hattiesburg Thursday.
Thorne said Hargrave was not employed at the facility, but she declined to offer further comment.
A federal grand jury in Shreveport indicted Hargrave in May.
Thorne said Hargrave will be transported back to Lafayette.
Hargrave had resigned from the school.
Ascension Episcopal School has been served with a lawsuit concerning a sex scandal between a former faculty-member and a student. The female employee resigned and is no longer employeed at the school, the student she's accused of having sex with is a 14 year old girl.
According to court documents, it all started in the Spring of 2009, when the then 8th grader was caught with cigarettes on campus. As a condition to move on to the 9th grade the following year, the student was required to seek counseling with a female faculty member at the school.
"My client was put into counseling with her and in the process of counseling she abused the position and authority and trust and ended up convincing her to have a sexual relationship with her," said the girl's attorney, Tony Fontana.
Fontana says that sexual relationship lasted until last month, when the girl's parents discovered a concerning e-mail.
"A sexually-toned e-mail, that the daughter had wrote to the counselor and the counselor [wrote] back, responding that 'I love you,'" Fontana said.
School officials are aware of the lawsuit and held an assembly earlier in the week to brief students and their families. Headmaster Pat Dickens released a statement reading, in part:
"The leadership of the school takes it's responsibilities for the safety and welfare of it's students very seriously. We are very concerned about the allegations made in the suit. We are fully engaged in the issue and investigating these allegations."
Complaints have been filed with state and federal officials, but so far no charges have been filed. The young girl at the center of this is undergoing treatment and is not being allowed to speak to investigators.