Monett School District teacher faces sex crimes charges

Published: Sep. 19, 2022 at 11:06 AM CDT
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MONETT, Mo. (KY3) - A nearly 20-month investigation led to the arrest of a Monett School District teacher for sex crimes.

Timothy Lemnel Steeley, 62, faces child abuse and sodomy charges.

The investigation dates back to February of 2021. Police stopped Steeley in a Nixa neighborhood after neighbors reported seeing a suspicious vehicle. Steeley, then, claimed he was dropping off ‘college books’ sold on Craigslist.

Investigators followed up on the incident by interviewing a 15-year-old boy staying with family at the home. The boy claimed he had met Steeley on an app. The teenager told investigators Steeley performed a sexual act in a truck outside the home.

Investigators say Steeley claimed he only discussed selling the books to the boy while in the truck. When the boy refused to buy the books, Steeley told investigators he left.

Christian County deputies arrested Steeley while working at a Monett school. The school district released a statement to KY3 News concerning the arrest.

“We are aware that a Monett R-1 employee, Mr. Timothy Steeley, has been arrested and charged with a class C felony for first-degree sexual abuse. Mr. Steeley was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation. The Monett R-1 School District conducted a background check on this individual as it does with all employees. The Monett School District does not have knowledge of any issues or concerns prior to the arrest. The District takes these matters seriously and has cooperated fully with the Christian County law enforcement during their investigation. We place the well-being and safety of our children as our highest priority. We are committed to providing a safe and successful learning environment in the Monett R-1 School District.”

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