TAMPA (FOX 13)
Students and parents at Freedom High School in Tampa reacted with disgust Tuesday as they learned a former track coach is accused of having sex with a student.
According to a Tampa Police report, the relationship started during a track meet in Gainesville in September. Smith, who was a volunteer track and cross country coack, is accused of giving a 17-year-old girl alcohol and telling her to go to his hotel room.
According to the report, Smith, 48, and the teenager had sex twice that night and a third time during another away track meet a week later.
"Teachers, you're here to teach, not to be involved with a student sexually or anything like that," said Kim Martinez, whose son is a student at Freedom. "It don't make no sense. It messes up the kid. The parent's got to deal with this. It's a distraction."
A schools spokesperson said Smith was fired in November after allegations of an inappropriate conversation surfaced.
"We were able to confirm some of the details of that conversation, so based on that we let that person go that day," said Tanya Arja, a spokesperson for Hillsborough County Schools.
The district said investigators then uncovered the full extent of the relationship, but the district was unaware until Smith's arrest this week.
Freedom High School's principal notified parents Tuesday morning.
"I just don't understand why teachers are trying to have sexual intercourse and stuff with students," said J.C. Duran, a senior student at Freedom. "I feel really bad for her in a way too because now she's going to have all of this on her."
Smith is charged him with two counts of sexual battery. He was being held in Hillsborough County on $150,000 bond.