Teacher Who Videotaped 'Rape' of Student Shouldn't Be Treated Like a Criminal

tara driscoll arrestedA 33-year-old law and government teacher from Long Island isn't who you'd really envision when you think of a rapist, but Tara Driscoll is facing charges of the sex crime after being arrested for a video that shows her performing sex acts on a 16-year-old boy who was also one of her students at Campus Magnet High School in Cambria Heights, Queens. Investigators have said that Driscoll picked him up in her car and drove him to a motel where they had sex. The age of consent in New York is 17 years old.

After having been a teacher with the school for five years, she was reassigned from classroom duties in May, when details of the encounter first surfaced. The boy has been issued an order of protection. The only thing up in the air is what will become of Driscoll. She has pleaded not guilty on charges of third-degree rape and criminal sexual act. Surely, given how the trial goes, she could end up in jail.

But I don't think that's the best case scenario here.

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The prosecution noted that Driscoll had recently been in rehab and had a history of alcohol abuse. That's not that surprising given how crazy this whole thing sounds. I mean, what person in their right state of mind would FILM a sex crime? Wait, no, let's back up. What 33-year-old adult in their right state of mind would have sex with a 16-year-old student? (Well, I guess that happened once on Dawson's Creek, but you could argue Miss Jacobs was a little woo-woo herself.)

What I mean is, obviously, this woman is not right mentally. She needs psychiatric help, rehab, counseling, etc. Throwing her in jail isn't really a punishment fit for the crime. I'm not sure if she should be allowed to teach again, but maybe after she goes through a rigorous clean-up and psych evaluation, she could ... in another district, err, maybe a private girls' school?? 

What she did is reprehensible, of course, but at the same time, it just sounds like she's a sad, screwed-up person who clearly needs help. Not an evil one with malicious intent of forcefully raping an underage boy. Not someone who belongs behind bars.

What do you think?

 

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