William Albert Brown has been a teacher for 19 years, and since 2008 he has taught language arts at Dorchester District 2’s Dubose Middle School.
Now Brown, 49, is banned from all school and district property, according to the district.
He was arrested Friday and charged with criminal solicitation of a minor and second-degree assault and battery. He was freed Saturday on $40,000 bail.
Brown could not be reached Tuesday, and his wife, Kelly Sigler, declined to discuss the arrest.
“I want to talk but I want to make sure it’s OK with the lawyer,” she said. “He might want to handle it and I don’t want to overstep or mess that up.”
Sigler owns Kelly’s Dance studio, which recently was voted the best dance studio in Summerville by readers of the Summerville Journal-Scene. Brown and Sigler have a 6-year-old child, Sigler said.
A Dubose official contacted the Dorchester County Sheriff’s Office on Thursday, and deputies began an investigation.
Brown is accused of making comments of a sexual nature to a 14-year-old student and touching her inappropriately while whispering in her ear, according to an incident report. The report is based on information from the 14-year-old and three juvenile witnesses.
That same day, Dorchester District 2 put Brown on paid leave and recommended that the board terminate him “due to violation of board policy that included improper conduct of a teacher and sexual harassment,” said spokeswoman Pat Raynor. “Now, by state law, it is in due process.”
When asked for Brown’s personnel file, the district referred it to its attorney, who did not respond.
There have been no other allegations against Brown by students at Dubose, according to investigators at the Sheriff’s Office. Brown has no criminal record, sheriff’s Maj. John Garrison said.
Brown’s wife told several media outlets this week that the couple is getting support from parents, current and former students, and others in the community.
“I’m amazed at the amount of support we have, and the reason is that they know that the truth will come out,” she told WCIV-TV. “The truth will prevail, and that all of this is just ridiculous.”
She said her husband of 11 years, “is a wonderful teacher, amazing teacher, father, husband, friend. He is a mentor to so many kids and has been over the past 19 years.”
Reach Brenda Rindge at 937-5713 or www.facebook.com/brindge.