Friday, June 01, 2007

Teacher, Aide Accused of Raping Boys

(New Windsor, New York) A teacher, Rebecca L. Becker, and a teacher's aide, Maria E. Zurita, both 28, at McQuade Children's Services in New Windsor have been charged with sex crimes after an alleged Memorial Day weekend of alleged sexual encounters with a pair of 16-year-old male students.

McQuade Children's Services, which provides special education to special needs children referred by the Department of Social Services, notified authorities when two boys failed to return to the school on Tuesday.

Rebecca L. Becker and Maria E. Zurita

Rebecca Becker was charged with third-degree rape, criminal sexual act in the third-degree and endangering the welfare of a child. Maria Zurita was charged with third-degree rape and two counts of endangering the welfare of a child. Both were fired by McQuade.

Notably, during investigation by McQuade officials, 31 sexually explicit love letters written by Becker to a 16-year-old were found. As a result, the relations between Becker and the boy are believed to have been going on for about two months.

Becker and Zurita were arraigned in New Windsor Town Court and released on $1,000 bond. A court appearance for both is scheduled for June 12th.

[Update 09/26/07]

Becker pleads guilty. Sentencing in November.

[Update 05/10/08]

Becker sentencing rescheduled for May 21, 2008. Zurita convicted and sentenced to jail.

[Update 05/21/08]

Becker sentenced.

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