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Lawrence County teacher charged with rape, sodomy, sex with students

Leslie Buttram Gillespie

The investigation is ongoing

Posted: May 28, 2021 11:55 AM
Updated: May 28, 2021 5:11 PM

An English teacher at RA Hubbard High School in Lawrence County has been arrested on rape and other charges.

Leslie Buttram Gillespie, 44, of Hillsboro was charged Thursday with second-degree rape, second-degree sodomy, and two charges of school employee engaging in sex act with a student.

Court records state that a 15-year-old and 16-year-old went to Gillespie's classroom after hours in September 2020. That's where the alleged crimes are said to have occurred.

Bond was set at $60,000. She bonded out of custody on Thursday.

Gillespie was RA Hubbard High School's Teacher of the Year in 2019.

The investigation is ongoing, said Chief Deputy Timothy Sandlin of the Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office.

Anyone with information regarding this investigation is asked to contact Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office investigators at 256-974-2500.

In a prepared statement, Lawrence County Schools Superintendent Jon Bret Smith said: "The Lawrence County school district has been made aware that an employee has been arrested. Our school district treats this type of situation with the highest level of care. District leaders are conducting an investigation into this matter and will support law enforcement as they do the same. While the district cannot provide any specific details at this time, we want to emphasize that there is nothing more important to Lawrence County Schools than the safety and well-being of our students. The district will work diligently and expediently to resolve this situation."

Smith also said Gillespie has been placed on administrative leave.

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