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Montgomery police say a person who claimed to have witnessed a child abduction Thursday in a Montgomery neighborhood has recanted his statements. More >>
GASTON COUNTY, NC (WBTV) -
It has all the makings of Hollywood movie: sex, blackmail and Facebook. A bizarre story with unexpected twists and turns.
The main character: Kwanda Carpenter, 33 and a bus driver for Bessemer City High School.
Gaston County Police say Carpenter went to the school's resource officer last week, claiming two students were trying to extort money from her through social media.
"Blackmailing her through Facebook messages for 60 dollars," said Sgt. Josh Hamlin.
But Hamlin started to investigate, "as they like to say, there was more to the story," he recalled.
Much more, in fact.
Police tell WBTV Carpenter was being blackmailed for having sexual contact with two 17 year-old male students.
The incident, they say, happened in Carpenter's car late one night last fall.
"She picked them up in car at 10 o'clock one night in October...took them to a dead end in street had sexual contact with them in her vehicle and then took them back home," Hamlin said.
While Hamlin says he's investigated his fair share of inappropriate relationships between school staff and students -- this case is a first for him.
"This is the first time in 17 years of law enforcement I've had the alleged victims try to extort or blackmail the alleged suspect," he said.
But it's the manner in which the students allegedly blackmailed Carpenter that Hamlin said should serve as a warning to teens.
"Everybody uses Facebook and I don't know why they think Facebook is private or that people aren't going to find out about because it's not," he said.
Hamlin wouldn't comment on if they are still investigating Carpenter, only that the case is now closed. He also told WBTV there are no prior incidents of this kind involving Carpenter.
She now faces a felony sex offense charge and the two 17 year old students are charged with blackmail.