WILKES-BARRE -- A teacher in Luzerne County is facing charges for allegedly having inappropriate relationships with students.
Robert Havard, 36, a teacher and soccer coach from Plains Township, wept Tuesday morning inside this district magistrate's office. He was arrested and is now charged with having a sexual relationship with a female student in the Wilkes-Barre Area School District.
Havard currently works at Solomon Plains Junior High but has worked in the Wilkes-Barre Area School District for more than a decade.
"We had received information regarding Mr. Havard and we followed up on those leads," said Luzerne County Detective Chaz Balogh.
The Luzerne County District Attorney's Office says it was tipped off that Havard was attending and hosting underage drinking parties with his students.
Court papers show that at one of those parties in 2008, Havard took a female student into a room and had sexual contact with her. Havard then allegedly had a sexual relationship with that 16-year-old female high school student for a year.
"It seems to be epidemic proportions around here. All the school districts are getting hit with this and I don't know the answers or why, a breakdown of moral fiber, I guess," said Richard Wren of Wilkes-Barre.
Valerie Dalton has a daughter who goes to Coughlin High School in Wilkes-Barre. She says Havard used to be her daughter's teacher.
"That's disgusting! I mean, I send my daughter here to learn, not to worry about her being sexually assaulted or anything. That's crazy."
While she's disturbed by the allegations of Havard partying with Coughlin students and having a sexual relationship with one in 2008, she's not surprised.
"I heard some stories, just the way he spoke out of line," Dalton said.
The Luzerne County District Attorney's Office believes Havard may have, in fact, been "out of line" and had sexual relationships with other students and hopes they come forward.
"We ask that if there are any former students or any other faculty members who have information, they can certainly contact the Luzerne County District Attorney's Office," said Det. Balogh. "I highly recommend that they do that."
The Wilkes-Barre Area School District issued a statement, saying Havard has been suspended pending the investigation.
Havard has been charged with one count of corruption of minors.