DAVIDSON COUNTY, N.C. – A South Davidson High School teacher, who was also the school’s head football coach, has been charged with indecent liberties involving a 15-year-old student.
Joseph Ray Cullen Jr., 44, of Mooresville, faces one count of indecent liberties with a student, according to Davidson County deputies.
The sheriff’s office began investigating on Oct. 30 after getting a report of inappropriate conduct by a teacher toward a 15-year-old student, according to officials.
The alleged incident happened on Oct. 29. Specific details have not been released.
Deputies said the suspect had been the school’s head football coach and an A/V teacher for South Davidson until the incident was reported.
Davidson County Schools released the following statement on Monday:
"Joseph Cullen, South Davidson High School teacher, is currently suspended without pay. This is an ongoing investigation that is being conducted by the Davidson County Sheriff’s Department. Once the situation has been investigated, the superintendent or superintendent’s designee will notify the news media and other interested parties with any updates. Student safety is of paramount concern for everyone with Davidson County Schools and we will continue to partner with law enforcement to ensure the safety and well-being of students, faculty and staff."
Cullen turned himself in to the Davidson County Sheriff's Office on Wednesday and was arrested, according to deputies.
He was placed in the Davidson County jail under a $100,000 secured bond and had court planned for Monday.
The suspect is the school’s second teacher in a week to face charges involving a student. Matthew David Belk was charged Tuesday with 21 felony counts of sex offense with a student.