GALLIPOLIS — A South Gallia teacher was taken into custody Monday before being arraigned Tuesday on the third-degree felony charge of sexual battery for an alleged incident involving one of his students, last year, according to a Gallipolis Municipal Court criminal complaint.
The complaint reports that on or around the date of December 26, 2017, “Morgan D. Halley did engage in sexual conduct with Jane Doe at his home located at … Fifth Avenue, Gallipolis, Gallia County, Ohio. Morgan D. Halley is employed as a teacher at South Gallia High School. Jane Doe (unidentified female victim) attends South Gallia High School and was a student of Morgan D. Halley.”
Halley, 33, of Gallipolis, had a bond set at $15,000 with a 10 percent surety, Tuesday. According to court officials, Judge Dean Evans was the sitting judge for the day and Halley pleaded not guilty to the charge. According to Gallia Prosecutor Jason Holdren, his office recommended a bond of $150,000.
According to Gallia County Local Schools Superintendent Jude Meyers, Halley has served as a high school English teacher of all high school ages. South Gallia is a combined high school and middle school.
“First and foremost, the safety of our students is our primary concern,” said Meyers. “So, we take that role and the safety of our kids as very important. At the end of last week, information was shared with us and based on that information we did put him on administrative leave, first thing, on Friday morning. We’ve been working with our local agencies to make sure we follow due process.”
According to Meyers, pending an investigation, Halley is not permitted to have contact with school employees, to be on campus or have contact with students. Halley is on leave with pay. Meyers has been in contact with members of the Gallia County Local Schools Board of Education regarding the incident.
Meyers said the school would follow the due process of law and wait to see what investigations may further reveal before moving forward with any other actions.
The Gallia Sheriff’s Office had no further comment other than to say the incident was still being investigated.
Dean Wright can be reached at 740-446-2342 or at the Gallipolis Daily Tribune Facebook page.