Pierson, FL – A campus advisor and volleyball coach at T. Dewitt Taylor Middle-High School in Pierson is facing charges he performed a sex act on a 14-year-old student in a gym bathroom at the school.
According to a report from the Volusia County Sheriff’s Office (VCSO), Keyunta Murphy, 23, was taken into custody around midnight, Tuesday, April 18, at his home in Pierson. The Sheriff’s Office was alerted to the incident around 2 PM on Monday after the victim’s mother contacted the school resource deputy at Taylor Middle-High.
The mother told the deputy her son disclosed that he was sexually abused by a school staff member around noon that same day.
The VCSO Child Exploitation Unit responded to investigate, and a Child Protection Team case coordinator interviewed the victim, who said Murphy contacted him during class and told him to come to the office with him. The victim agreed, but instead of going to the office, the 2 went to the gym bathroom on the middle school side of campus. There, the victim said Murphy performed oral sex on him inside the bathroom
The victim indicated he and Murphy had previously conversed through Instagram, and Murphy had offered in an Instagram message to pay the victim “$200 to touch it,” said officials in the report from the VCSO.
A detective reviewed Instagram messages between Murphy and the victim and confirmed they had discussed Monday’s meeting in the gym bathroom. He also found messages from Murphy asking for photos of the victim’s genitals and offering to pay him.
Murphy did not speak to detectives on Tuesday morning and was transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail, where he was being held on $50,000 bail on charges of lewd or lascivious battery on a victim under 16, using a computer to seduce/lure a child and unlawful use of a 2-way communication device.
No other potential victims have been identified. However, the Sheriff’s Office is asking parents and guardians to talk with their children and report information about additional incidents to detectives at the Child Exploitation Unit.
Those detectives can be reached at 386-323-3574 or through Crime Stoppers of Northeast Florida toll-free, at 888-277-TIPS. Information can also be submitted by downloading the smartphone app from the Crime Stoppers website here.
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