Twenty-seven-year-old former Cincinnati Bengals cheerleader turned high school teacher Sarah Jones was in Kentucky court earlier this week pleading guilty to having sex with a seventeen-year-old former student. The plea led to her escape of a jail sentence. Last November, Jones resigned from a teaching position at Dixie Heights High School and as a Bengals cheerleader. She was indicted in March and her trial would have started last Wednesday. Instead of proceeding to trial, Jones pleaded guilty in a tearful confession to custodial interference and sexual misconduct, in place of more serious charges, as a result of prosecutors’ plea bargain.
Jones admitted to beginning a romantic relationship with the student in February 2011 while she was in the position of authority. She also confessed that the two had sex, that she sent him sexually explicit texts, and lied to police about their relationship. The seventeen-year-old boy was in Jones’ English class in 2008, and she then became his tutor in 2010-11.
By agreeing to the plea bargain deal, Jones’ sentence was reduced to five years of diversion, where she must report to a probation officer and undergo drug testing. She won’t serve any jail time and won’t have to be registered as a sex offender. Prosecutors offered the deal because the teen and his family weren’t cooperating with the case, refused to provide prosecutors with information regarding the situation, and instead supported Jones. Reasons the defense agreed to the plea agreement were that Jones did not want the embarrassing text messages she sent to the teen exposed in court, and since the teen is eighteen years old now, he and Jones are free to be together. Apparently, the pair will be discussing their relationship on Dateline and the Today show.
What’s next for Jones? She won’t be trying out to be a Bengals cheerleader, certainly won’t be in any teaching positions, and has expressed an interest in becoming a lawyer. She’s currently a legal assistant.