NBC New York
Claudia Tillery, a 42-year-old Brooklyn teacher who students say was well-liked, is accused of raping a student in a relationship police say may have gone one for years. Roseanne Colletti reports.
A Brooklyn public school teacher was arrested Tuesday on a series of criminal sex charges, including rape and sexual abuse.
The alleged victim was a male student at her school.
Claudia Tillery, 42, was taken into custody in Crown Heights at about 5:30 p.m. She taught at Middle School 35 in Bedford-Stuyvesant, but was not working at the time of her arrest.
Tillery was well-liked, and considered a strict teacher.
"I was kind of shocked," said 11-year-old Luciano, a student at MS 35, on learning of his teacher's arrest. "I was mad because she was one of my favorite teachers."
"When I was there, she was cool," said former student Kyle Thomas. "She was nice. I would never suspect she would do this kind of thing."
Tillery was charged with rape, unlawfully dealing drugs and alcohol to a child, sexual misconduct, a criminal sexual act, sexual abuse and acting in a manner injurious to a child.
The now 14-year-old boy and Tillery engaged in a sexual relationship for two years before deciding to end it and come forward, the paper reports.
The fact that the relationship took place off school grounds was little comfort to parents.
"I'm very upset to hear that," said one mother. "I'm very surprised."
"This is really a surprise," said Stanley Timo, a parent at the school. "The school is really, really good. So I'm surprised any teacher would do anything like that.
It wasn't immediately known if Tillery had an attorney.