The Law Blog of Oklahoma

Former Luther Band Teacher Enters Blind Plea in Child Rape Case

Tuesday, May 9, 2017

In April 2015, a 33-year-old Luther band teacher was accused of having an inappropriate relationship with a 12-year-old girl. By February 2016, he wascharged with multiple crimes involving the sexual abuse of the preteen.

Charges against Kyle Whitmus included seven counts of lewd acts with a child under 16, one count of soliciting sexual conduct with a minor, and one countof first degree rape.

The case came to light after the girl, who admittedly "had a crush" on the teacher, confessed the relationship to her mother after the mother found "unknownstains" on the girl's underpants while doing laundry. The girl's mother informed her father, who contacted police. Whitmus soon resigned from his teachingposition, and the superintendent said that accepting the irrevocable resignation was quicker and less costly than proceeding with termination.

After investigating, police determined that the reported relationship with the 12-year-old girl was not the first time the band director had been reprimandedfor inappropriate conduct with students. In 2012, the man was suspended for two days after allowing a student to come to his hotel room alone duringa band trip.

Other students were reportedly aware of the sexual relationship between the teacher and the 12-year-old girl, saying that he would often put on a movieduring class, turn up the volume, and then take the girl into his office alone. Students say they did not report the teacher's actions because he would"let them do whatever they wanted."

The girl told investigators that the relationship with her teacher turned sexual in November 2014, with the band director touching her inappropriately.By January 2015, the pair had sex in the music library at school.

Police reportedly uncovered text messages the band director sent to the student, including one which said, "I feel like a pedophile though when I thinkof you like that and I'm not."

On Friday, the former band teacher entered a blind plea in the case, meaning he pleaded guilty to the charges without the benefit of a plea agreement.He pleaded guilty to some of the charges and no contest to the others. His sentencing will be entirely up to the judge. Sentencing is scheduled forJuly 24. He faces up to life in prison.

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