After checking her 16-year-old daughter’s cellphone, a mother reported to authorities Saturday that the girl and an assistant principal at Goose Creek High School had allegedly been having an illicit sexual relationship.
Paul Jette Herman, 36, of Cicadas Song Drive in Moncks Corner, was arrested about 4:30 p.m. and charged with sexual battery with a student, without aggravated force or coercion — a felony punishable by up to five years in prison.
His sexual relationship with the girl was ongoing from December 2014 until she disclosed it on Saturday, according an incident report from the Sheriff’s Office.
Herman is being held at the Berkeley County jail and is expected to appear Wednesday for a bond hearing.
Berkeley County School District spokesman Chip Sturgis said in a Tuesday news release that the school had just been made aware of Herman’s arrest and is cooperating fully with the Sheriff’s Office.
“Mr. Herman will be placed on leave immediately pending this investigation,” the release states.
He said later Tuesday that Berkeley County School District Superintendent Rodney Thompson would not release a statement until Wednesday, when more information would likely come to light.
Goose Creek High School Principal Jimmy Huskey has not returned a message for comment.
A news release from the Sheriff’s Office states that the victim’s parents discovered text messages on her cellphone and then questioned her. They then filed a report with the Sheriff’s Office.
An investigation followed and Herman was arrested after detectives obtained a statement from the victim and found corroborating evidence on her cellphone.
According to Herman’s Linkedin profile, he was a Mount Pleasant police officer from 2001 to 2005 and then taught at Cross High School in Berkeley County from 2005 to 2012 before becoming an assistant principal at Goose Creek High School.
The Mount Pleasant Police Department has not returned a message for comment.
Herman’s profile also states that he received a bachelor’s degree from Charleston Southern University and a master’s degree from The Citadel. It also states he received a second master’s degree from Grand Canyon University.
According to Goose Creek High School’s website, Herman is listed as principal of the Science, Technology, Engineering, Math Academy.
Berkeley County School Board member Jim Hayes said Tuesday afternoon he could not offer any comment about the arrest because the board just learned the news.
Hayes, who used to be an assistant principal at the same school, said he worked with Herman for one year, 2012-13. At the time, he said, Herman worked with juniors and was in charge of facilities at the high school.
According to a check with the State Law Enforcement Division, Herman does not have a criminal record in South Carolina.
Reach Melissa Boughton at 937-5594 or at Twitter.com/mboughtonPC.