Local teacher arrested on multiple felony child sexual assault charges

Stephen Chapman, a Griffin High School math teacher and tennis coach, has been arrested by the Griffin Police Department and is facing five felony charges including rape, aggravated sodomy, incest, aggravated sexual batter and aggravated child molestation.

Stephen Chapman, a Griffin High School math teacher and tennis coach, has been arrested by the Griffin Police Department and is facing five felony charges including rape, aggravated sodomy, incest, aggravated sexual batter and aggravated child molestation.

SHEILA A. MATHEWS :::

Stephen Chapman, age 51, of Griffin, was arrested Friday, Aug. 14, at Griffin High School where he taught math and coached the tennis team. Chapman was arrested on five felony charges including of aggravated rape, aggravated sodomy, incest, aggravated sexual battery and aggravated child molestation.

Authorities say the crimes have been ongoing for approximately the past year, but was only recently reported.

Sgt. Karen Yancy, of the Griffin Police Department Criminal Investigation Division, received the initial report Aug. 13, and on Aug. 14, she obtained five felony warrants against Chapman. He was arrested that same day.

According to Judy Parker, executive director of the Griffin-Spalding County School System’s Communications and Partnership Department, Chapman had been a Griffin High teacher for two years.

“His hire date was Aug. 5, 2013,” she said. “This would have been his third year teaching here.”

Parker confirmed the GSCSS does background checks on everyone from staff to volunteers.

“We do a background check on everyone. Absolutely,” she said. “There was no flag on it (Chapman’s background check) or he would not have been hired.”

Chapman’s arrest at Griffin High did not impact students, she added.

“No students were ever in danger,” she said. “We were notified as soon as police showed up at the school.”

Chapman has been placed on leave without pay.

Parker said there is no mandated timeframe for when that status may change.

The GSCSS is not currently conducting an independent investigation, but rather is working with GPD investigators.

“Our investigation would be in co-operation with the police and taking their reports,” Parker said.

Yancy urges anyone who may have information pertinent to this case to contact her at 770.229.6450 or kyancy@cityofgriffin.com.

“I hope there are no other victims, but if there are, I hope they’ll have the courage to come forward,” Yancy said.

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Comments

  1. Elizabeth Worley says:

    I am having a really hard time believing this of Mr. Chapman. I’ve known him my 11th and 12th grade year of school (at Griffin high) when he started teaching. And since then, I haven’t seen any kind of harm come from him. He’s always been a good person, from what I have seen, and a pretty cool teacher. Nothing but good about him.
    I would have to hear it from Mr. Chapman himself to truly believe it….

    • ashley jewell says:

      Kids are afraid to come forward nowadays because of reactions like this. You won’t believe it until he tells you. Those kids have a voice and have been through a hard time. You never know someone especially not after just two years I don’t care how nice he is or was to you, he apparently has a problem. These kids are the ones hurting now, his students and his family from what I gather of the incest charge. Just wait if he’s been there for three years I can almost guarantee there are going to be more charges made. This is sick and disgusting, instead of poor Mr nice guy Chapman, how about poor children that have to live with this for the rest of their lives or what they have to go through during all the court arraignments and then the trial if he doesnt try to take a plea bargain that is. I’ll be praying for those kids, no one deserves any of the things he did to them.

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