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Former Duluth Teacher Charged After Alleged Relationship with Student

Updated: 08/05/2014 10:50 PM
Created: 08/05/2014 5:08 PM WDIO.com
By: Laurie Stribling
lstribling@wdio.com

A former teacher and adviser is charged with criminal sexual conduct after an alleged inappropriate relationship with a student at Duluth's Harbor City International School.

According to the criminal complaint, 50-year-old Christopher Bacigalupo engaged in a romantic relationship with a 17-year-old student back in 2009 at Harbor City.

"The Defendant engaged in a romantic relationship with her which included kissing, oral sex and other 'stuff' prior to her turning 18 in December of 2009," according to the complaint.

The complaint goes on to say the two engaged in sexual intercourse after the victim turned 18 and started school at the College of Saint Scholastica. Bacigalupo got a job at CSS in 2010 in the IT department. A CSS spokesperson said Bacigalupo's employment ended on July 17 because of a personnel matter.

The complaint said Bacigalupo gave a statement to CSS during their investigation where he admitted to having sex with the victim after she turned 18. In that statement, court records said he denied any power differential between them despite the fact that she was a high school student.

The complaint said the victim came forward after Bacigalupo's wife found out about the relationship and messaged the victim on Facebook. The victim said she felt concerned and told her mother. The victim eventually reported it realizing what the Defendant allegedly did was wrong.

"The top priority is their safety and that they have a good academic environment that is safe consistently for them to attend," Harbor City Executive Director Paul McGlynn said. "We took the allegations and incident very seriously."

McGlynn said the school launched their own investigation once the allegations were brought to light. He said the school is working to prevent incidents like this.

"This fall we are doing a PAVSA training on being aware of those type of boundaries that come up in a school setting," McGlynn said. "How to move through the procedure when you find out or become aware of a situation."

Bacigalupo's first court appearance is set for August 28.

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