Former Haltom teacher gets probation for having sex with students

09/30/2013 3:20 PM

09/30/2013 3:22 PM

A former Haltom High School computer technology teacher was sentenced Monday to four years of probation for having sex and doing “everything you could imagine” with students.

One of the students married the 40-year-old instructor, a prosecutor said Monday.

In a plea agreement reached with prosecutors in Criminal District Court No. 213, Tonya Flink, 40, of Hurst pleaded guilty to two counts of improper relationship between an educator and a student. The counts involved two students.

In exchange, Flink was sentenced to probation with deferred adjudication on each case.

“This was unusual case in that one victim married the defendant and was not cooperative,” Tarrant County Assistant District Attorney Robert Foran said Monday in an email. “The second victim is in agreement with the outcome. After taking into consideration all of the facts and circumstances of both cases, we felt this was an appropriate resolution.”

Oliver Hassibi of Fort Worth, Flink’s attorney, agreed.

“This plea agreement is not any different than those involving the two previous teachers charged in this county,” Hassibi said Monday by phone.

A search warrant affidavit said Flink had sexual relationships with at least four of her students during the 2010-11 school year, telling one that she liked “young Hispanic kids.”

That student told investigators that the relationship with the woman began when she stayed after school to help him with homework, and it evolved into sexual encounters where they did “everything you could imagine,” the affidavit said.

None of the students were identified and it’s not clear which one married Flink.

Flink, a mother of three children, began working as the computer teacher at Haltom High in August 2007.

She began having relationships with male students sometime before December 2010 and continued with at least one for several months, according to the arrest warrant affidavit.

Phone records for one student indicate that he and Flink telephoned each other 850 times from December 2010 to May 2011.

The student told investigators that their relationship started with casual flirting as he stayed after school, with Flink promising to help him with his grades.

The student said Flink was “pushing herself on him” and the two exchanged hundreds of text messages. He said she bought him clothes and other gifts. She even told him that she loved him, he said. On numerous occasions, Flink would show up at his house and knock on the back door.

Sometime in 2011 Flink got divorced. At the time, she had one child in college, one in high school and one was a 5-year-old.

The student’s parents contacted Haltom City police in September 2011 after he told them that he was living with Flink and that he had been dating her since he was a senior at Haltom High.

The student, who had graduated, told investigators in September 2011 that he regretted being involved with the teacher and that it had messed up his life.

Haltom City detectives determined that Flink had sexual relationships with three other students. Two refused to cooperate with authorities.

Flink resigned from Haltom High in August 2011 because of the pending investigation, according to the affidavit.

But in September 2011, Flink had landed a job as health science terminology teacher at Carter-Riverside High in the Fort Worth school district. She was suspended from that job when parents from Haltom High contacted district officials.

This report includes information from the Star-Telegram archives.

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