Indicted teacher accused of sexual assault is fighting back

DALTON, Georgia(WDEF) – The former Coahulla Creek High School teacher who was just indicted by a Whitfield County grand jury for having sex with a student is fighting back.

The defense for Elizabeth Scroggs, 32, will be based on language in a Georgia Criminal Code that defines sexual assault.

Scroggs’ attorney, Steve Wilson is not disputing his client had sexual relations with a student that occurred away from school grounds. But he is disputing the language of the law that allows her to be charged with sexual assault.

"The law says that if that occurs, then that’s a crime called sexual assault, even though this is a consensual relationship between two adults," Wilson said.

The student is 18-years old and reportedly supports himself.

"This man. This 18-year old adult is an independent person. We think the definition in the statute about school does not led itself to this situation because the statute defines school as a educational institution for children through the 12th grade," Wilson said.

Williams is referring to the Georgia Statute that defines sexual assault against a person in custody. It says a person commits sexual assault when such a person has supervisory or disciplinary authority over another person who is in custody of law or detained in an institution. But Williams says the law is written to protect students from sexual contact with adult teachers and that it’s vague when it comes to sex between consenting adults.

"I am sure that reasonable people can conclude that the legislature did not take into consideration this kind of circumstance," Wilson said.

If convicted, Scroggs could face up to 25-years in prison. She could also be required to registered as a sex offender for the rest of her life. But her attorney argues that his client is no sexual predator and should not be labeled as such, especially since the sex was consensual between two adults.

The Whitfield County District Attorney’s Office is not commenting on the case.

Categories: Crime, Local News, Whitfield County

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