Teacher accused of student sex spent entire career in Tacoma
Records released Tuesday to The News Tribune show that a Tacoma Public Schools teacher charged with having sex with a Gray Middle School student appears to have spent her entire teaching career in Tacoma schools.
Teacher Keshia Shaw, 33, of Puyallup, pleaded not guilty in Pierce County Superior Court on July 6 to five counts of second-degree child rape. Her trial is scheduled for Aug. 30.
Shaw began working in Tacoma as a substitute teacher in 2002 and was hired full-time at Gray in 2005.
Among the schools where she subbed: all five of the district’s comprehensive high schools; Baker, Truman, Jason Lee, Giaudrone, Meeker, Mason and Stewart middle schools; Geiger, Lister, McCarver, Boze and Manitou Park elementary schools and three schools that are now closed: Gault, McIlvaigh and Hunt middle schools.
In 2004, Shaw earned praise for her teaching skills while working with a Stadium High School student.
Shaw had also been a coach and study club leader at Gray and an intramural coach at Gault.
The News Tribune made a public records request three weeks ago for school district documents from Shaw’s personnel records, seeking any records of previous complaints or disciplinary actions against her.
On Tuesday, Shaw’s attorney, Michael Kelly, sought to block the release of documents, arguing that it would invade Shaw’s privacy and threaten her right to a fair trial. He said in court documents that some of the sought-after material concerns “unfounded and false allegations” and “conduct wholly unrelated to allegations of sexual misconduct.”
Kelly sought a temporary restraining order from Pierce County Superior Court Judge Ronald Culpepper. Following Culpepper’s review, most of the requested documents were released to The News Tribune.
Withheld were two letters to Shaw from school officials. One, written in 2009, is from former Gray Middle School principal Yvonne Bullock.
Another letter, from school district Assistant Superintendent Laurie Taylor, is part of an ongoing school district investigation into Shaws alleged actions. It was not part of Tuesdays ruling. Other documents related to the investigation were also withheld.
Culpepper plans to review the 2009 letter on Thursday and decide whether it can be made public.
Earlier this month, Shaw was charged with having sex with a 12-year-old boy, starting in 2007. Pierce County prosecutors allege that Shaw had sex with the boy for the first time when she was his sixth-grade teacher. It allegedly took place both at school and in the boy’s bedroom at home while his mother was at work.
Two final sexual encounters allegedly happened when the boy was in eighth grade after he left Gray and returned to visit friends at his old school.
The boy, now 17, came forward with the allegations in May. Prosecutors say he did so after hearing a church sermon about sexual abuse and telling his mother he had been abused.
Shaw remains on paid administrative leave from her job while she collects pay earned before her July 6 court date. Her annual salary is $58,584.