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Friday, February 23, 2024 | Back issues
Courthouse News Service Courthouse News Service

H.S. Student Claims Teacher Seduced Her

FLORENCE, S.C. (CN) - A high school band leader in South Carolina coerced a student into having sex with him, the former student claims in court.

Nancy Hardwick sued Matthew Tyler Hutto, Dillon County School District Three and Latta School District, in Federal Court.

Latta, pop. 1,500, is northeast of Florence, S.C., toward the North Carolina line.

Hardwick claims Hutto began trying to seduce her in 2010, soon after he was hired as Latta High School's music and band teacher.

"He was ultimately successful after much pressure, coercion and persuasion. Hutto then instructed the minor child not to tell anyone," according to the complaint.

"In the ensuing weeks and months, Hutto continued to exercise direct authority and control over the minor child at school and Hutto exhibited behaviors which exceeded appropriate interaction between a teacher and student.

"The inappropriate relationship between Hutto and the plaintiff was so open and obvious that at least two different employees of the district made inquiries about it. ...

In approximately March or April of 2011, Hutto's wife discovered the relationship, and the minor child admitted to having had sexual intercourse with Hutto."

The Dillon Police Department was notified. Hutto was charged with and pleaded guilty to sexual battery of a minor, criminal solicitation of a minor, first degree assault and battery, and dissemination of obscene or illicit materials to a minor, according to the complaint.

Hardwick claims the school district knew or should have known what was going on.

She seeks punitive damages for negligence, assault and battery, privacy invasion, and violations of the Constitution, and Title IX.

She is represented by William E. Hopkins Jr. of Pawleys Island, S.C.

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