UPDATE: Former school band director under investigation

By: Lynnsey Gardner Email
By: Lynnsey Gardner Email

May 2, 2008

AUGUSTA, Ga. -- News 12 has confirmed Richmond County deputies are investigating the former band director at Augusta's George P. Butler Comprehensive High School.

That comes after the mother of a teenage girl accused Anthony Shelton of having sex with her daughter. "She was having sex six, seven to eight times a week with her band teacher," says the mother. News 12 is hiding her identity to protect her 16-year-old daughter.

Shelton resigned the band director's job in March.

Sexual Crimes Investigator Thelma Gilchrist told News 12 Friday, school police asked deputies with help with the investigation Thursday.

Richmond County School Superintendent Dr. Dana Beddon scheduled a news conference Friday afternoon to discuss the situation. "Singular incidents like this tarnish the whole profession."

Dr. Walter Reeves is the principal at Butler High School and the person who hired Anthony Shelton last June. "I hired him because he had good references and did a good job with his interview."

And, during his short time at Butler, Dr. Reeves says he was pleased with Shelton. "He was a good band director, did a good job with the band."

But then in February of 2008, allegations of inappropriate behavior surfaced by two students and Shelton later resigned. But, the school board says the latest allegations are the most shocking, allegations that the pair had a four month sexual relationship inside the band room.

The 16-year-old says she was pulled out of class to have sex with Shelton; she even outlines where he kept the condoms.

"I would hate to just speculate and jump off the list because we don't know if it's true or not yet, but who knows," says Dr. Bedden.

Gardner to Dr. Reeves, "Have any other students come forward to claim they were sexually abused by Mr. Shelton?"

Reeves answered, "No, I certainly don't take these allegations lightly, but at the same time, we can’t brand someone or falsely accuse them."

Still, the girl's mother says she is sure her daughter is telling the truth. "I want to see him punished to the fullest. I want to see justice done."

The Sheriff's Office says they cannot complete their investigation or file an arrest warrant against Shelton at this time if they wanted too, because the girl is not talking.


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