Skip to main content

Former teacher who had sex with student back in trouble

  • Story Highlights
  • Debra Lafave's probation forbids her to have contact with anyone under 18
  • Florida's Corrections Department: Lafave talked with 17-year-old coworker
  • The two discussed family problems, sexual issues, report says
  • Lafave was ordered to quit the job because of the allegations
  • Next Article in U.S. »
Decrease font Decrease font
Enlarge font Enlarge font

(CNN) -- Debra Lafave, a former Florida middle school teacher convicted of having sex with a student, was arrested Tuesday for "inappropriate but non-sexual contact" with a teenage coworker, the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office said.


Debra Lafave was arrested after talking with a teenager. She is not allowed to have contact with anyone under 18.

The association violated the terms of Lafave's probation, which forbade her to have contact with anyone under 18, the sheriff's office said.

She was released on her own recognizance.

Lafave and her mother, Joyce Beasley, had no comment as they left the jail.

"I can only characterize this as somewhat of a bizarre and unusual violation," said Lafave's attorney, John Fitzgibbons.

Lafave, 27, pleaded guilty in November 2005 to having sex with a 14-year-old boy and was sentenced to three years under house arrest and seven years of probation.

Lafave was also required to register as a sex offender and abide by numerous conditions.

She was arrested after corrections officers interviewed a 17-year-old girl, who worked at a restaurant where Lafave had been employed since January 2006, according to the violation report from Florida's Corrections Department. Video Watch Lafave's ex-husband discuss the allegations »

The teenager told the officers that Lafave discussed "non-work related issues such as family problems, friends, high school, personal life, boyfriend issues and sexual issues in both private one-on-one conversations" with her and in group settings, according to the report.

"I would characterize this simply as 'girl talk,' or 'guy talk,' if you will, among fellow employees, that all of us do every day," Fitzgibbons said. "This is it. There's no more, there's no less. ... I would describe it as simply a workplace friendship."

The co-worker will turn 18 on January 2, Fitzgibbons said.

Lafave refused to make a statement regarding the allegations, the document said.

She was ordered to quit the restaurant job and now works as a receptionist in her mother's barber shop, the report said.

Lafave says she suffers from bipolar disorder and is receiving treatment.

Fitzgibbons said his client has done everything required of her, living with her parents and leaving only to go to work. She has done so well on two years of house arrest, he said, that he has been planning to ask that the third year be waived.


Fitzgibbons said he still intends to make that request, and hopes Lafave's arrest will not hurt that effort -- "I would hope that the court would be understanding."

"She's really tried hard, so it's upsetting to her," he said of the arrest, but noted it was "unheard of" for someone on probation for a sexual offense to be released on her own recognizance. E-mail to a friend E-mail to a friend

All About Debra Lafave

  • E-mail
  • Save
  • Print