The Mankato West art teacher who abruptly resigned this week amid allegations of sex with a student was also investigated for claims that she harassed a female student. The 17-year-old girl in question had previously dated the student with whom Downs is accused of having a sexual relationship.
According to investigative files from the Mankato Department of Public Safety, the parents of the girl contacted police and the school district this summer, claiming their daughter had been harassed and stalked by Tessa Downs. Among their allegations was that Downs disclosed private health information about their daughter to the male student at the center of the sex probe.
The parents also told police that Downs started going to the church next to their home and would watch their house as she came and went, and that Downs was tracking their daughter on social media. At the end of the investigation, prosecutors reviewed the evidence, but determined that it did not support criminal charges.
They did advise the girl’s family that they could seek a restraining order.
Downs submitted her official resignation as of Wednesday, October 4th.
Teacher-student sexual relations are prohibited by the Mankato School District, but since the student that Downs allegedly had a relationship with was 18-years-old, that is not currently a crime in Minnesota.
The mother of the student told police that her son admitted to having a sexual relationship with Downs, starting in March and ending in June. The first incident allegedly occurred at the Downs’ residence after a meeting of the art club.