ATHENS, Tenn. (WATE) — An Englewood woman indicted on more than a dozen child rape charges appeared in McMinn County court for her arraignment Monday morning. Earlier this month, the sheriff’s office had announced she’d been indicted on child sex crimes involving high school juveniles.
Melissa Blair, 38, briefly appeared in court Monday morning, where a discussion about whether she’s allowed on county school property concluded that she would still be able to drop her children off at their school, but she cannot enter the premises. Blair had previously posted her $100,000 bail after the McMinn County Sheriff’s Office announced that she had been indicted on more than 20 sex charges involving juvenile high school students.
Investigators said Blair had traded items for sexual encounters with male students who attend McMinn Central High School.
Blair is charged with 18 counts of aggravated statutory rape, four counts of human trafficking by patronizing prostitution and one count of solicitation.
School and police officials have emphasized that Blair is not, nor has she ever been, a school employee. Blair is not allowed to go to the school where the victims attend or attended.
McMinn County Sheriff Joe Guy said all nine victims were students at McMinn Central High School. Two of the nine victims are now adults while seven are still under 18.
Sheriff Guy also said investigators believe there may be additional juvenile victims and are encouraging these victims and their parents to contact the McMinn County Sheriff’s Office.
Blair’s next court appearance is scheduled for Monday, May 9.