A Pleasantville High School teacher is facing charges after the Atlantic County Prosecutor's Office says she had an unlawful sexual relationship with an 18-year-old student.

Jessica Gaeckle - Photo: ACPO

30-year-old Jessica R. Gaeckle of Galloway Township, who was arrested on Friday, has been charged with two counts of second degree official misconduct and one count of third degree hindering apprehension.

The prosecutor's office believes Gaeckle engaged in sexual relations with an 18-year-old Pleasantville High School student on at least two occasions and then directed the student to destroy evidence upon learning of a pending, criminal investigation.

Gaeckle was processed at ACPO and released on a summons.

New Jersey's age of consent is 16. However, the age is 18 when it involves an adult with supervisory authority, such as a teacher. Teens under 16 can give consent to someone who is no more than four years older than they are.

New Jersey lawmakers recently tried to make it a sex crime for teachers or school workers and volunteers to have sex with students who are 18 and 19.

Even if a teacher is not found guilty of a crime or arrested, school districts have their own policies barring inappropriate content or relationships with students and teachers can still be fired or lose their teaching credentials for violating those rules.

With reporting from Dan Alexander.

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