Former Florida teacher found guilty of raping 14-year-old student

Bonita Springs, Florida- 39-year-old Joseph Mejia was found guilty on Monday of four counts of lewd and lascivious battery of a 14-year-old student after a five-day trial.


A former technology teacher at Gulf Coast Charter Academy South, Mejia had formerly been seen as something of a guidance counselor that the student would trust "with her life," until she realized how he truly "viewed her," according to the arrest report.


He was arrested in April 2019 after the girl's mother reportedly found sexually explicit text messages on her daughter's cell phone.


The investigation revealed that thousands of text messages had been exchanged and that he had raped the student on at least four occasions in different locations throughout Collier County.


Naples Daily News reports that the State Attorney's office has filed enhanced charges against Mejia as he was in a position of authority during the commission of the assaults.


Mejia is scheduled to be sentenced on June 21 and each of the charges carry the possibility of up to 15 years in prison.