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School Counselor Receives 2 Years In Prison For Sex With Student 18, Boy’s Parents Asked Judge Not To Send Her to Jail

January 8, 2015  |  Posted by: Giovanni DePhillips
School Counselor Receives 2 Years In Prison For Sex With Student 18, Boy’s Parents Asked Judge Not To Send Her to Jail Image courtesy of newarkadvocate.com

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A former school guidance counselor has been sentenced to two years in prison for having sex with an 18 year-old male student.

Mackenzie Land Matthews, a 34-year-old married mother wept her sentencing hearing in Licking County, Ohio on Tuesday, as the judge handed out her 2-year sentence, even though the student’s parents asked the judge not to send her to prison.

Matthews plead guilty to having sex with an 18-year-old student she met at the school. Although both admit the sexual intercourse was consensual, it is against the law for a teacher to have sex with a student in Ohio.

‘If she’d just waited four months (for the student to graduate), it wouldn’t have been a crime,’ Prosecutor Ken Oswalt said, the Columbus Dispatch reported.

Matthews is also ordered to register as a sex offender for the rest of her life.

She apologized for her actions at the sentencing hearing saying, ‘I just want to sincerely apologize to the victim and his family, and to the Heath community and my school system,’ she said tearfully.

‘I want to apologize to my friends and my family and my children, and especially my husband. I want to express the remorse I have for this, and I accept the responsibility for my actions.’

The male student nor any of his relatives were not present at the hearing to protect his identity.

Oswalt told Licking County Judge Thomas Marcelain that the student’s parents did not want Matthews to receive prison time for the sake of her children.

The victim had said he wanted the outcome to be left to the courts, the Newark Advocate reported.

Even though the judge said it was unlikely Matthews would repeat the offense, he scolded her for using her job to engage in an inappropriate relationship, when she was required by law to prevent such conduct’.

Matthews had pleaded guilty to one count of sexual battery for having sex with the then-high school senior while they were off school campus between February and March 2010.

The relationship was kept secret until the student told someone about it this year, and that person contacted the Licking County Children Services, who in turn alerted police.

When police questioned Matthews and the victim neither denied the allegations.

Matthews, worked at the school district since 2005, she was charged in November and resigned shortly after being charged.

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