New court date set for Bryant teacher suspected of sexual assault
A former Bryant teacher who was scheduled to appear in court Tuesday for the alleged sexual assault of a minor has a new court date.
Courtney Speer, 31, was not present Tuesday in Benton's District Court, but her lawyer attended on her behalf. Speer is scheduled for an appearance on Dec. 18.
Speer has been accused of having a sexual relationship with a 17-year-old Bryant High School student. The case stems from a joint investigation involving both the Benton and Bryant police departments because incidents allegedly occurred in both jurisdictions — in the school parking lot in Bryant and at Speer's home in Benton. She is facing several counts of sexual assault in the first degree, a Class A felony, said Sgt. Todd Crowson of the Bryant Police Department.
At the time of the alleged incidents, Speer was employed as a ninth-grade English teacher at Bryant High School, Crowson said. Speer resigned Oct. 1.
According to a press release from Bryant police, investigators were notified in early October by school resource officers of the alleged sexual assaults. The student involved reportedly gave statements to investigators that he and Speer engaged in sexual intercourse for the first time in June inside her vehicle, which was parked on the Bryant High School parking lot. The student told investigators this happened on four different occasions at the parking lot.
Lt. Don Birdsong of the Saline County Detention Center said Speer voluntarily surrendered at the jail on Oct. 4 and was released after posting a $20,000 bail bond.
Speer is not the only teacher at Bryant High School to be charged with sexual assault this year. Band teacher James Chad Green recently was arrested for the alleged sexual assault of a male student.
Green has been under investigation since December 2011, Crowson said. Green voluntarily surrendered to authorities Oct. 31. He is scheduled to appear in court Nov. 19 on charges of first-degree sexual assault.