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A former Kaysville charter school teacher was being held without bail in the Davis County Jail on Tuesday, the day he was charged with nearly a dozen sex offenses in connection with one of his female students.
Stephen Niedzwiecki, 33, was taken into custody Monday afternoon. The onetime teacher and basketball coach has been accused of engaging in sex with the Jefferson Academy student off school grounds, including at his home.
He was charged Tuesday in 2nd District Court with eight counts of forcible sodomy, all first-degree felonies; and one count of attempted rape and two counts of forcible sexual abuse, all second-degree felonies.
Assistant Bountiful Police Chief Ed Biehler said the allegations came to light late last week after the student's parents contacted the Department of Child and Family Services and law enforcement upon learning of the relationship. A detective interviewed the girl on Monday before arresting Niedzwiecki.
According to a probable cause statement, Niedzwiecki "told her [that] if she told, he would make her life hell" at the Weber County high school she was to later attend.
Biehler said Tuesday that the girl and Niedzwiecki first became acquainted when she was 14. The girl was a student of his at Jefferson Academy a charter school serving grades kindergarten through ninth and one of his basketball players. The two allegedly began having sex when the girl was 15 and Niedzwiecki was tutoring her off campus, Biehler said.
Biehler said Niedzwiecki taught at Jefferson Academy from 2010 to 2011 before going to work for Quest Academy this summer. None of the alleged crimes occurred at Quest or involved Quest students, Biehler said.
Keith Facer, chairman of the Jefferson Academy board, declined to discuss the allegations specifically but did issue this statement Tuesday:
"We are committed to the safety of our children at Jefferson Academy and perform background checks on all our faculty. A background check was completed and cleared at the time Stephen Niedzwiecki was hired.
"At the time of his arrest, Mr. Niedzwiecki was not a member of the Jefferson Academy faculty.
"Jefferson Academy has practices and policies in place where students are encouraged to report incidents of this nature. Again, Jefferson Academy is committed to the safety of our students and will fully cooperate with authorities in this matter."