WEST SPRINGFIELD, Mass. (WGGB) — A local teacher is accused of a serious crime involving a minor and the charges are shocking many in the West Springfield community, but perhaps the most chilling part of this story is that the teacher is charged with aggravated rape of a child.
“He was very shy, he kept to himself a lot. He never really shared any personal stories about himself. Just a quiet overall guy,” said former student, Jessica Theulen.
54-year-old James Parks, who is a science teacher at West Springfield Middle School, was arrested at this home in Southampton on June 21.
“He didn’t seem like a mean guy, he didn’t seem creepy either, he was more like a normal shy guy,” explained Jessica. “I feel like a lot of students kinda took advantage of it because I do remember our class being kind of like rambunctious, but we were also in middle school.”
We reached out to Southampton police but they wouldn’t comment on the case saying that the investigation is still ongoing.
West Springfield Superintendent Russell Johnston is not able to comment either, stating that “This is a personnel matter.” However, we were told that the school department didn’t learn about the charges until after school was out for summer vacation.