Forsyth teacher convicted of sex offense in Catawba Co.

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Darlene Fenners Melton

CATAWBA COUNTY, N.C. — A Kernersville teacher was placed on probation Wednesday after she was convicted of taking indecent liberties with a child in Catawba County more than 25 years ago.

A judge in Catawba Superior Court gave Darlene Fenners Melton, 56, who was a teacher in the Hickory City Schools at the time of the incident, a suspended prison sentence of three to 10 years and placed her on probation for three years, the Catawba County District Attorney’s office said.

Melton was accused of taking indecent liberties with a 15-year-old student in August 1987, the district attorney’s office said. At the time, Melton was 30.

Melton admitted the relationship to school officials at the time, officials said, but no charges were filed.

After she resigned from her position in Hickory, she obtained a job with the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools and taught at East Forsyth High School, said Theo Helm, a spokesman for the local school system.

The school system suspended her after the allegations were brought to light and later dismissed her, Helm said.

There were no complaints here against Melton, Helm said.


  • GDM

    Haha @ Jim. Well if they are not going to do due diligence by running a background check then why do they all of a sudden care what she did in the past now anyway?

    • GDM

      No. Read the article again. She paid the price and did probation. Now another district she works for heard about it and fired her.

      • BBrown

        No, she was placed on probation THIS WEEK for the incident that happened 25 years ago. She was released from her current position when the incident was found out about. She should have been charged then. I don’t understand why she was allowed to work for another NC school system. Apparently nobody made a phone call to check her work reference, at the very least. Obviously no criminal charges would have shown up but a phone call was all it would have taken to find out.

  • MiMi LLawsonn

    So Winston Salem Forsyth County Schools did not do a criminal search on her before hiring her as a teacher. The article states that she admitted to the relationship but NO CHARGES WERE FILED….so they wait until 25 years has passed and charged her now. So are the court systems this far behind?

    • sunnygirlversustherainyworld

      They may very well have done a criminal search on her. She was never charged back then so nothing would have shown regarding this. A simple telephone call to check a job reference would have solved the problem in this situation, though.

      • JIM TOM

        probably not.
        Defamation and Slander … A neutral employment reference is essentially as follows: He worked here from this date to that date. His last job title was this

  • Just crazy

    I think 25years later is a bit much, she admitted it back then and no one did anything. Just ban her from teaching, record should stay clear.

  • Jrj8563d

    You people are sick! She was my teacher in 1997 and if it weren’t for her I wouldn’t have made it through that year. I was very sick and she was the only teacher that was nice enough to make sure I completed my school work in addtion to helping me work out my physically sick depression related issues. I’m not saying what she did was right. It was WRONG. But have some respect for the victims in this situation.

    • Cynthia

      Jr… how are you calling yourself a victim in this case???? she was your former teacher and she didn’t physically harm you in any way.

  • Jrj8563d

    I am not calling myself a victim. When did I say I was the victim? The families that have been affected by this are the victims. Glad I could clear that up for you.

  • DBG

    haha holy shit what a lucky little fucker if thats her at 56 id smash it now her at 30 i would of beat the wheels off of it

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