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Arrest Made In Sexual Battery Case

Posted on Monday, September 11, 2023 at 4:33 pm

An investigation, stemming from an inappropriate-behavior complaint, has led to a former School System employee being arrested on sexual-battery charges, according to Franklin County Sheriff’s Office reports.

Kristi Jolynn Whelen was arrested Sunday and posted a $50,000 bond, reports said, adding that she is scheduled to appear in Franklin County General Sessions Court on Sept. 18.

Whelen is charged with solicitation of a minor (solicitation of sexual battery by an authority figure, two counts), four counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor, four counts of purchasing alcohol for a child and dissemination of smoking paraphernalia to a minor.

Reports said Sheriff’s Office personnel met Friday with three guardians of teenage children who had filed a complaint against a woman they said was a former North Middle School teacher’s aide who had exhibited conduct that was beyond questionable.

Reports said that on Aug. 3, the woman went to a convenience store and picked up the teenagers without consent from their parents. The youths requested to be transported to a store in Winchester where the woman purchased alcoholic beverages for them, reports said.

Authorities interviewed a teenage boy about the conditions and what his relationship with the woman was, reports said.

He said the interaction with her was through Snapchat conversations, reports said. The boy further stated that during one of the conversations, the woman had asked him if he wanted to see something, reports added.

The boy said she had sent three digital photographs of herself in various nude poses, reports said, adding that although her face was concealed, she had distinctive tattoos on her right arm that revealed her identity.

Investigators said they believe the three pictures were sent to arouse a sexual relationship, reports said.

Reports said Whelen also purchased a THC vaping pen for one of the juveniles and had provided the youth with a picture of herself in a bathing suit where she was wrapped in a towel. The latter action resulted in the second solicitation-of-a-minor charge, reports added.