Forsyth teacher convicted of sex offense in Catawba Co.

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Darlene Fenners Melton

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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.

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