Teacher accused of sexual conversations with boy, 15

By Rick Elmhorst, Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, December 19, 2017, 3:59 PM EST

A Polk County high school teacher accused of sexual communications with a 15-year-old Texas boy made her first appearance before a judge Tuesday.

  • Robin Dunlap, 27, placed in Polk County Jail
  • Accused of 'sexually explicit conversations' with Texas boy
  • Detectives arrested Dunlap Sunday
  • Teacher will be fired, superintendent says

Winter Haven Police say the teacher, 27-year-old Robin Dunlap, turned an innocent mistake about the boy's age into something that landed her in jail.

Authorities say if she would have left well enough alone, she'd probably be a free woman today.

According to investigators, the Haines City High School teacher was using an Xbox One, the Kik chat app and Google Hangouts to send videos, pictures and messages so raunchy the police chief was at a loss for how to describe them politely.

"You got me dumbfounded on that. It's screwed up," said Chief Charlie Bird.

When the El Paso teen's mom saw the bad stuff on his devices, police say she called Dunlap to tell her to knock it off and that her son was only 15, not 19.

Police say Dunlap actually came to them to report the issue and said it was an honest mistake about the boy's age.

"We would have looked at it and more than likely she would not be facing the serious charges she is now," Bird said.

"You know it's wrong. You've been told it's wrong. You know it's illegal. And then continue anyway. That's a first." -- Police Chief Robin Dunlap

But police said that wasn't the end of it. Dunlap continued to communicate with the Texas teen and, according to police, some of the communication was pretty explicit.

When police went this weekend to Dunlap's apartment to question her about the new messages, she said the teen was the only one who understood her.

"You know it's wrong. You've been told it's wrong. You know it's illegal. And then continue anyway," Bird said. "That's a first."

A judge set Dunlap's bond at $50,000 and said she couldn't have any contact with anyone under the age of 18 or have any use of an electric device with internet capability.

The school district's human resources department had been conducting an internal investigation on Dunlap since October.

"We immediately took this teacher out of the classroom when these allegations surfaced and began our internal investigation," said Superintendent Jacqueline Byrd. "As educators, we are held to the highest of standards, and we must do everything in our power to protect children. This type of conduct runs contrary to that mission, and is disgusting and indefensible. I have instructed my HR staff to immediately begin the process of termination. We will continue to cooperate fully with law enforcement."