A Mexia Junior High School teacher was arrested Wednesday, accused of trying to arrange for men in Morocco to have sex with an underage family member, local officials said.
Amber Michelle Parker, 37, of Fairfield, was arrested after a joint investigation by the Freestone County Sheriff's Office and the McLennan County Sheriff's Office that started when family members concerned about Parker's intentions with the girl contacted police, according to a statement from Freestone County Sheriff Jeremy Shipley. Freestone deputies reached out for assistance from McLennan County investigators who specialize in human trafficking investigations, according to the statement.
"After a joint investigation between Freestone County Sheriff's Office Sgt. Investigator Preston Cordova and McLennan County Sheriff's Office Detective Joseph Scaramucci, a female suspect was placed under arrest for the offense of Trafficking of Persons after conspiring to traffic a minor child to multiple male subjects online in Morocco," Shipley wrote.
Family members believe Parker tried to make arrangements last month to take the girl to Morocco and meet with men to allow them to have sex with the girl, McLennan County Sheriff Parnell McNamara said.
"Family members got wind that Parker was going to try to lure this girl to Morocco," McNamara said. "It is a dastardly story, and it is trafficking at its worst."
Parker posted photos of the girl in lingerie and with her breasts exposed on social media accounts to find men interested in the girl, McNamara said. Scaramucci helped authorities write and execute search warrants for electronic devices and other evidence in the case, he said.
Although the girl did not go with her, Parker traveled to Morocco in mid-December and returned Jan. 1, he said.
Parker, an eighth-grade reading teacher, was placed on administrative leave Wednesday afternoon when the school district learned of the allegations and arrest, Mexia ISD Superintendent Lyle DuBus said.
"Student safety is Mexia ISD's No. 1 priority," DuBus said. "We take these allegations seriously and we will be working closely with our partners in law enforcement. The district continues to monitor the situation and feels no students at Mexia Junior High were ever at risk."
Parker remained in custody at Freestone County Jail on Wednesday night. Bond information was not available.