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Washington County Sheriff's Office

Hurricane High teacher charged with sexually exploiting student

By Pat Reavy  |  Posted Apr 21st, 2017 @ 4:42pm


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HURRICANE, Washington County — A Hurricane High School teacher was charged Friday with sexually exploiting a student.

Aaron Karl Esplin, 40, of LaVerkin, was charged in 5th District Court with sexual exploitation of a minor, a second-degree felony; and sexual battery, a class A misdemeanor.

Esplin, a driver's education and special education teacher at Hurricane High, was arrested Thursday after school administrators learned of a possible inappropriate relationship with a 17-year-old girl.

Investigators believe the teen sent inappropriate pictures of herself to Esplin, who "admitted to soliciting the images," according to a statement from the Hurricane Police Department. Esplin is also accused of inappropriately touching the girl.

The relationship was discovered after another student told the principal what was going on, according to charging documents. The 17-year-old girl and Esplin said he received pictures via Snapchat, which Esplin would then save.

"I asked him why she sent the pictures, and he said he had requested she send him naked pictures of herself," charges state.

Investigators say Esplin would inappropriately touch the teen while hugging her, according to charging documents.

Details about how long the alleged activity had been going on or whether detectives suspect there are additional victims were not available Friday.

Esplin has been placed on administrative leave, according to the Washington County School District. He has been at the high school for nearly 14 years and is listed as the school's junior varsity baseball coach in addition to his teaching duties.

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