Stephanie Walzl, a disgraced Howard County, Maryland, teacher and lacrosse coach, has reach a plea deal and pleaded guilty to sexually abusing a student, the Baltimore Sun reports.
This development in the case of the Manchester resident, who taught at Reservoir High School in Fulton, is according to the Howard County State Attorney’s Office.
The 26-year-old Walzl was arrested in September.
She was slapped with five counts of fourth-degree sex offense of a student.
Stephanie Walzl, 26, of Manchester, was arrested and charged in September with five counts of fourth-degree sex offense of a student at Reservoir High School in Fulton, according to the State’s Attorney’s Office.
After Stephanie Walzl entered her guilty plea, Howard County Circuit Court Judge Mary Kramer sentenced the teacher to five years in prison, Patch reports.
All but two of those years have been suspended.
Walzl will do her time at the Howard County Detention Center in Jessup.
Howard County investigators first began investigating the teacher in June 2020 after they caught wind of an inappropriate relationship she had with a student.
Throughout the investigation, detectives uncovered evidence dating back to December 2019.
Stephanie Walzl, the teacher who just pleaded guilty, exchanged tens of thousands of text messages with her teen victim during a six-month period.
The two maintained contact throughout each day.
That included before, during and after school hours.
WBAL TV reports that investigators are not aware of any other victims.
Police said investigators analyzed almost 69,000 text messages between the two and determined that they were in regular contact before and after school, and throughout the school day.
Patch reported in the immediate aftermath of Stephanie Walzl’s arrest that the teacher who has now pleaded guilty was put on administrative leave.
“Teachers and coaches have an influential role in the lives of young people and at no time, ever, should they use their position of authority to take advantage of a student entrusted to their care,” Howard County State’s Attorney Rich Gibson said in a news release.
“This type of improper conduct will not be tolerated by our office, and offenders will be held accountable for their actions.”
The victim was a teenage girl.
A 29-year-old lacrosse coach and teacher at Reservoir High School in Ellicott City has been charged with sexual abuse of a minor. Stephanie Walzl of Manchester was arrested by Howard County Police after they say she engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a female student. Police began investigating after being notified of the relationship.