Teaching assistant faces sex offense charge
Posted February 1, 2012
Raleigh, N.C. — A teaching assistant at Southeast Raleigh Magnet High School resigned Wednesday after being charged with a sex crime involving a 14-year-old boy.
Phillip Jerrod Barham, 20, of 2504-101 Tryon Grove Drive, was arrested Tuesday on one count of statutory sex offense stemming from a Jan. 19 encounter at the boy's home.
Police responded to a 911 call that day about a fight at the home. When they arrived and started investigating, they were told the boy had been sexually assaulted.
Barham's family said after a court appearance Wednesday that he is innocent and that the boy's mother made up the story.
Greg Thomas, a spokesman for the Wake County Public School System, said Barham, who was hired in October, resigned Wednesday morning.
The school system, Thomas said, is conducting an internal investigation, which is standard when a school employee is accused of inappropriate behavior.
The boy's mother said Barham and her son were friends but that he does not attend Southeast Raleigh High.
Barham was in the Wake County jail Wednesday under an $800,000 bond.