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Gym teacher accused of having sex with 15-year-old student: 'Thank you, I love you'
Screenshot of Volusia County Jail website

Gym teacher accused of having sex with 15-year-old student: 'Thank you, I love you'

A high school gym teacher and football coach in Florida is under arrest after he began having a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old student, police say.

On Friday, police received reports that 42-year-old Arin Hankerd had an inappropriate relationship with one of his female students at Atlantic High School in Port Orange, Florida, just south of Daytona Beach. An investigation revealed that Hankerd and the unnamed student met back in August when she first entered his phys. ed. class and that their interactions remained platonic for several months.

However, their relationship allegedly changed in December when Hankerd began buying the girl lunch. At one point, the girl told him, "Thank you, I love you," and Hankerd allegedly replied in kind.

The girl's mother became suspicious when the girl began arriving at school early to see him. The mother then decided to read the girl's diary, where the girl detailed their romantic relationship at length. The mother also discovered Instagram messages that supposedly indicated that the two were having a sexual relationship. Reports suggest that Hankerd and the girl first became intimate in early January.

Other students supposedly teased the girl, saying that she and Hankerd were dating, but she brushed those comments off and even denied the relationship to school officials.

There are also indications that Hankerd discussed a future with this girl, telling her that the two of them would live together someday and that she would become his children's stepmom. He also supposedly told the girl that he had moved around to jobs at different schools because of allegations that he was having inappropriate relationships with other students.

Hankerd first joined Atlantic High School two years ago. Before that, he coached football at Mainland High School and Father Lopez Catholic High School.

On Sunday, Hankerd was arrested and charged with several crimes, including two counts of lewd and lascivious molestation, one count of traveling to meet a minor, and lewd and lascivious exhibition via computer. His bond was set at $115,000, and he remains in custody in the Volusia County Jail. It is unclear when he is next expected to appear in court.

Following his arrest, Volusia County school district officials met with Hankerd at the jail, where he then tendered his resignation. "The safety and security of our students and staff is of utmost importance to us and we will continue to cooperate fully with the local authorities as part of this investigation," a district statement read in part.

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Cortney Weil

Cortney Weil

Sr. Editor, News

Cortney Weil is a senior editor for Blaze News.
@cortneyweil →