Smithson Valley teacher used open period to prey on student, court documents say

Russell Dewayne Hamilton, 27, charged with improper relationship with student

By Mariah Medina - Digital Journalist
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SAN ANTONIO - A Smithson Valley High School teacher and coach was arrested in late December after a student victim told deputies the teacher had "bent her over his classroom desk" and had "inappropriate sexual contact" with her.

Russell Dewayne Hamilton,  27, is accused of having an improper relationship with a student between Oct. 13 and Nov. 1.

Court documents say the student told a deputy she had kissed Hamilton "on at least two occasions" and that the sexual contact escalated on Oct. 25 when Hamilton allegedly "bent her over his classroom desk, lifted up her dress and proceeded to have inappropriate sexual contact" with the girl.

The victim said there were other instances of inappropriate physical contact that included groping.

Investigators confronted Hamilton with the allegations and a warrant states he denied the allegations in a written statement. He also later declined to provide a statement to the Comal County Sheriff's Office.

The student said Hamilton would have her bring paperwork to his classroom over a two-week time frame during his conference period. During that time, the student said he would "touch and hug" her and that it eventually escalated into more.

Authorities reviewed surveillance footage of the hallways near Hamilton's classroom from Oct. 16 to Oct. 25 and saw the student victim enter his classroom for "varying amounts of time."

The student victim said that the only inappropriate contact they had after the Oct. 25 incident was when they kissed on Nov. 1. The student said she and Hamilton didn't have any contact outside of school and that she felt their inappropriate relationship had escalated quickly because he "made her feel comfortable with him.

Investigators talked to a student aide who worked with the victim and the student aide said Hamilton had gone by the office multiple times to ask the victim to make copies for him and bring them to his classroom. The aide said "it appeared Hamilton would flirt with the student victim" and that she would be gone for 20 minutes or more when she would go to Hamilton's classroom.

Hamilton's former student aide who graduated in 2017 told investigators Hamilton would flirt with her and had kissed her once when she was a student. The former aide said she didn't tell anyone because she was going to graduate in a few weeks and "didn't want to get involved in anything."

The former aide said Hamilton had recently messaged her on Facebook to ask how she was doing, but that the conversation progressed to him asking her to come over to his house. The former aide declined his invitation.

Comal Independent School District spokesperson Steve Stanford sent the following statement to KSAT:

The safety and security of all of our students is of the utmost concern here in Comal ISD and we take all allegations of inappropriate teacher behavior seriously and act immediately when we learn of such behavior. The allegations that he acted inappropriately with a student came to our attention on Nov. 28. That same day he was placed on administrative leave and law enforcement was notified. Mr. Hamilton submitted his resignation on Dec. 19. Mr. Hamilton was hired in Aug. 2014 and was a math teacher and coach.

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