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Oklahoma Teacher Explains How Sexual Relationship With Student Began

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Jennifer Caswell admitted on national television she had sex with a middle school student in her classroom in Hollis, which is in far southwest Oklahoma. She had only had her teaching certificate for six weeks. Jennifer Caswell admitted on national television she had sex with a middle school student in her classroom in Hollis, which is in far southwest Oklahoma. She had only had her teaching certificate for six weeks.

An Oklahoma teacher charged with having sex with a middle student has explained how the relationship started.

The woman told her story exclusively to Dr. Phil and he spoke with News 9 about why these inappropriate relationships are happening.

Jennifer Caswell admitted on national television she had sex with a middle school student in her classroom in Hollis, which is in far southwest Oklahoma. She had only had her teaching certificate for six weeks.

"It's horrible because that's for life. I'm gonna be a sex offender forever and I'm not a predator," Caswell told Dr. Phil during an episode that aired Tuesday, May 19. "I'm not a sex offender. I'm not a threat or a danger to anyone."

Caswell is charged with three counts of Second-Degree Rape, two counts of Enticing a Child and one count of Forcible Sodomy involving a 15-year-old 8th grade student.

The 29-year-old former teacher said they had sex in her classroom where she taught at Hollis Middle School.

"I want to know what in the world are these women thinking," Dr. Phil told News 9 following his interview with Caswell. "We expect them to put our children's interest above their own, to keep their personal lives out of the classrooms, to keep their personal needs out of the classroom and to put that child's interest ahead of their own."

At the time of the sexual encounter, Caswell was married with a son of her own. She revealed to Dr. Phil it was in a loveless marriage and that she enjoyed the attention she was getting from the student.

"What is shocking is how emotionally disoriented a person can get because of relationship problems, depression problems and feeling this connection and saying, 'You know what? I'm above accountability,'" Dr. Phil said.

Caswell resigned in April 2014. Two months later, she was arrested after driving 650 miles to Mississippi and meeting the boy for sex in a hotel room. The boy was there vacationing with his family.

"I'm gonna pay for it forever," Caswell told Dr. Phil. "I didn't force anything. I'm not a rapist."

"To not see them as children is a complete distortion, these are children and they are scarred by this," Dr. Phil told News 9.

Dr. Phil said he hopes this case helps focus the conversation moving forward.

"What kind of screening does the school need to do that they're not doing? What kind of questions do we need to be asking? What kind of monitoring needs to be going on so this is not happening," Dr. Phil explained.

Caswell waived her right to a jury trial and is scheduled to enter a plea June 1. She faces prison time if convicted.

Dr. Phil said while these awful cases happen, there are tens of thousands of dedicated teachers who sacrifice for the betterment of their students and we cannot paint them all by the acts of a few.

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