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The Carthage Press
  • Former Jasper High School employee charged with statutory rape, statutory sodomy

  • A former Jasper High School employee is accused of having sexual contact with "several students," over an undetermined amount of time according to investigators with the Jasper County Sheriff's Office.
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  • A former Jasper High School employee is accused of having sexual contact with "several students," over an undetermined amount of time according to investigators with the Jasper County Sheriff's Office.
    Janice Lorene Rusk, 42, rural Carthage, was charged on Tuesday with one count of felony second degree statutory rape and one count of felony second degree statutory sodomy after an investigation that Sheriff's Capt. Derek Walrod said started in March.
    "I know we've got other victims we're looking into," Walrod said on Tuesday. "The one victim we filed on was a 16 year old male. I understand we got in touch with her attorney and she turned herself in. She has since bonded out of Jail."
    Rusk was released on Tuesday on $5,000 bond. According to a sworn statement, filed in the case on April 7 by Sheriff's Det. Ed Bailey, he was called on March 26 by the Children's Division and the Jasper Police Department about incidents of sexual contact between Rusk and "several juvenile males."
    Bailey wrote that he interviewed the juvenile male on April 2 and that's when the male told Bailey he had sexual intercourse with Rusk on the first week of December, 2013. Bailey wrote that the boy had been texting with Rusk "for a while," and they agreed to meet at a bridge at the west end of a family's property on Baseline Road. The name of the family was redacted in the copy of the statement released by the Jasper County Circuit Clerk's Office.
    The statement said Rusk arrived and told the boy he could not tell anyone about the event, then proceeded to stroke him before they engaged in intercourse. No attorney was listed for Rusk in the Jasper County Court record online and a number listed at the Rusk address had been disconnected when a reporter called it Tuesday evening.
    Walrod said he had not been told what job Rusk held at the Jasper School District, but an online staff directory on the Jasper R-5 website listed her occupation as paraprofessional.
    Rick Stark, the superintendent for the Jasper School District, responded to a text message seeking comment with a statement that said, “These are allegations (and now charges) against a former employee. The district awaits due process to be completed so the truth comes out, whatever that might be.”
    No further court dates were listed in the online court records.

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