January 27, 2017 (Fault Lines) – It’s hard to believe that, all of a sudden, there is a rash of teacher-student sex romps. There are a lot more stories in the news these days about taking “hot for teacher” to the literal level. But like cop shootings, this is probably more a function of cell phones than a newfound epidemic. In the world of cell phone videos and text messaging, it is a whole lot easier to get busted doing stupid stuff than it used to be.
Texas teacher Thao Doan is the latest teacher to find herself in a jam over an affair with a student.
Thao “Sandy” Doan, a 27-year-old teacher at Raul Quintanilla Sr. Middle School, was arrested last week and faces a sexual assault charge because of the alleged relationship. The boy is a former Quintanilla Middle School student, Dallas ISD police wrote in Doan’s arrest warrant affidavit.
Teachers are not supposed to have sex with students. That’s pretty well-settled. But this case has a twist. The “victim” seems a little savvier than the normal poor middle-schooler victimized by his manipulative sex-fiend teacher.
Back in 2015, Doan started talking to the boy by text message, Instagram, and an app called Kik. They met that summer at a park and had sex. Doan then had sex with the boy a few more times later that year.
Rather than being traumatized by the horror of sex with a teacher, the teenage boy saw an opportunity. Showing off his entrepreneurial skills, he figured out how to profit from the situation.
In January 2016, [Doan] said, someone she didn’t know contacted her and threatened to tell police about the relationship if she didn’t give him money. She said she continued to get calls from different numbers about different drop-off places for the payments.
The money would be the downfall of both the student and the teacher. Doan ultimately paid the kid in the neighborhood of $28,000. He then “reinvested” the money, which led his mother to turn Doan in.
Earlier this month, the boy’s mom reported that he was getting from Doan “large amounts of money” he was using for “illegal purposes” and causing problems at home, the affidavit states.
After his mother noticed all the money, she found suggestive texts on his phone and called the authorities. Doan admitted she had sex with the boy on the occasions in 2015 and then again in December of 2016. Apparently the illicit sex was so good she was willing to risk not only criminal charges, but the continued blackmail.
The moral of this story is somewhat complicated. But it demonstrates an important lesson. Nothing is as simple as it seems when crime is involved.
If you are a victim’s advocate, the teacher is a rapist. 14 is too young to consent in the eyes of the law, so this is no different than jumping out of the bushes with a mask and duct tape. If you are a cynic, the student just lived out what most teenage boys dream about. The teacher’s prosecution isn’t going to accomplish much.
If you are a rational person, the whole case demonstrates why the law is such an imperfect vehicle for solving our problems. Having sex with a 14-year-old is definitely stupid. Leaving a nice paper trail of text messages and Instagrams for the police is even stupider. Getting blackmailed and then going back to do the very thing that got you blackmailed is the stupidest of all of these decisions.
But on the other hand, this “victim” doesn’t seem like much of a victim. Statutory rape laws are in place to protect children. The law seems to think a child is incapable of making a good decision about sex. And the law is probably right. Most kids are simply not mature enough to handle sexual relationships.
But this kid sounds a little different. He is no babe in the woods, having already made good use of his short time here on Earth.
The boy’s mother told KDFW-TV (Channel 4) this week that he has been in and out of the juvenile system on burglary and robbery charges. The mother told the station she knows her son was wrong but she believes Doan should have known better as the adult in the scenario.
Blackmailing his teacher for $28,000 was pretty slick. The kid seems like quite the budding criminal. The law Doan is being prosecuted under is meant for the kid’s protection. But it sounds like society needs protection from him as well.