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Crater teacher charged in alleged relationship with student

A Crater High School science teacher faces an official misconduct charge for an alleged inappropriate sexual relationship with an 18-year-old male student.

Central Point police arrested Sarah Louise Swanson-Suhrstedt, 28, at 8 a.m. today, a news release from the police department said.

Police spent 31/2 months investigating a report of an inappropriate sexual relationship between Swanson-Suhrstedt and her student, Capt. Chuck Newell said in the news release. The Southern Oregon High-Tech Crimes Task Force forensically analyzed several cell phones and computers looking for evidence and detectives interviewed several students, police said. Based on the combination of evidence and student statements, police arrested Swanson-Suhrstedt this morning, one week after classes ended.

She was charged with one count of first-degree official misconduct, a charge that applies when a public servant knowingly performs an act constituting an unauthorized exercise in official duties.

Police said the suspected relationship happened during the school year, but off the school campus.

Central Point School District officials said in March that they had placed a teacher, whom they declined to identify at that time, on administrative leave on March 2 and notified police about possible misconduct.

— Anita Burke