In the first sentence of its article on the arrest last year of Olathe South High School Teacher Michael Jasiczek for having a sexual relationship with a student, the Kansas City Star identified the victim as a “her.”
In its Tuesday article on the arrest of Olathe East teacher and Shawnee city councilman Justin Adrian the Star made no allusion whatsoever to the sex of Adrian’s victim. Nor does the Star mention the party affiliation of Adrian, a Kansas delegate to the 2016 National Democratic Convention. The Star’s Katy Bergen reported on both stories.
“Adrian is accused of engaging in consensual sexual relations with a person 16 or more years old,” (italics added) write Bergen and co-reporter Tony Rizzo. The reporters delicately avoid using pronouns throughout the story.
In the way of background, 16 is the age of consent in Kansas, but it is nonetheless a felony for school teachers to have sexual relations with a student at the same school.
As the Sentinel reported on September 14, when the story of Adrian’s resignation from the Shawnee City Council and dismissal by the school became news, neither the Kansas City Star nor the Shawnee Mission Post mentioned Adrian’s sexual orientation.
What made this something of an issue is that Adrian is openly gay. This was potentially problematic in that Adrian’s hubby had posted at least one sexually provocative photo of Adrian, a sometimes model, on a Facebook page easily accessible to students who know where to look.
True to form as well, the Star made no mention of any other problems within the Olathe School District. As noted above, Olathe South High School Teacher Michael Jasiczek was busted for having sex with a student just last year.
In August of this year, the Sentinel reported on the apparent suicide of another Olathe East teacher, John Derby, shortly after police, armed with a warrant, raided his Overland Park apartment looking for child porn.
Although the local media have done no follow-up on the Derby case, the Sentinel did receive a heartfelt letter from Derby’s wife. She made a convincing case that Derby had serious mental health issues and that the media reporting on his alleged porn collection and suicide was inaccurate.
When there are multiple sex crime cases within a given public school district– North Kansas School District has had even worse problems than Olathe–the teacher may get a one-day media spanking, but the district super inevitably gets a pass.
But if the story involves a Catholic school, even if the incident is 30 or 40 years old, hold the presses!