Wednesday April 08, 2009: A student teacher at a Sussex County elementary school admitted having sexual encounters with a pupil in her car and in her bedroom prior to her arrest last week, according to an affidavit of probable cause released today by the county prosecutor’s office.
In a videotaped interview with law enforcement officials, Lindsay Massaro, 23, a senior at Centenary College in Hackettstown, said one of the encounters occurred in her car in Branchville. During that encounter, the two performed sex acts on each other, according to the two-page affidavit.
During another encounter, on the night of March 27, Massaro stated she picked the boy up in Branchville and drove him to her house on Morris Avenue in Frankford, where they had sex “several times” in her bedroom. Massaro said she then drove the boy back to his home, according to the affidavit filed by New Jersey State Police Detective Sgt. Howard Brown.
Massaro was arrested March 30 and charged with second-degree sexual assault, third-degree endangering the welfare of a minor and fourth-degree criminal sexual contact.
The case brought to the attention of law enforcement officials earlier on the day of Massaro’s arrest when Brown was contacted by the boy’s father. The father claimed his son was having an “ongoing sexual relationship” with Massaro, an eighth-grade student teacher at his son’s school, the K-8 Frankford Elementary School.
According to the affidavit, Massaro admitted during her interview with Brown and Detective Sgt. Donald Peter of the Sussex County Prosecutor’s Office to having a “consensual sexual relationship” with the boy, whom she met and befriended while student-teaching.
Massaro’s attorney, James Porfido, has said he would “vigorously defend” Massaro against the charges.
She was released from the Sussex County jail on March 31 after posting $75,000 bail with no 10 percent option.
As a condition of her release, Massaro was ordered to have no unsupervised contract with minors under the age of 16, stay away from the school, have no contact with the alleged victim or his family, and undergo a psychological evaluation.
As a student teacher, Massaro was working toward her state teaching certificate in special education, the superintendent of the Frankford Elementary School has said. She served as a sixth-grade student teacher one day a week at the Great Meadows Middle School in Independence Township last spring.
Massaro is scheduled to appear for a pre-indictment conference before Superior Court Judge N. Peter Conforti in Newton on May 4.