An alleged victim took the stand in the trial of a former Miami Palmetto Senior High School teacher accused of crossing the line with several underage girls at more than one school.
Opening statements began Wednesday in the case against Jason Meyers.
The alleged victim testified shortly after.
“I had his wife as another teacher, and his kids would come to school and visit sometimes,” said the woman, “so, yes, I had a crush on him, but there were also parts that felt very wrong.”
The alleged victim relived a piece of her past as a teenager in the case against her old creative writing professor.
“The stool that I was sitting in was pretty tall, and he was like in his seat, so he stood up, and we were standing very close together, and he put his hands on my face, and he kissed me,” she said.
“Do you recall saying anything to him?” a prosecutor asked.
“Yeah,” said the alleged victim.
“What did you say?” asked the prosecutor.
“I said ‘no,’” said the alleged victim.
Myers’ trial began seven years after the initial allegations of harassment and sexual abuse against female students surfaced in 2016.
During opening statements, the prosecution told jurors the defendant broke the trust that he was given as a teacher for the Miami-Dade Public Schools District.
“At that time, the defendant was arrested for three counts of sexual activity as a teacher, with authority over her, with power over her,” said a prosecutor. “He used his classroom as a bedroom. He committed multiple crimes, and the state will prove that to you.”
The defense argued there is no evidence in this case.
“Context is everything, and that’s what this case is about,” said a defense attorney. “While, she was taking Mr. Meyers’ class, she started a rumor, and she told multiple other students that she was having sex with her teacher, Jason Meyers.”
The victim in this case was awarded $6 million in a civil suit against the M-DCPS district. That decision is on appeal.
“[In] her effort to get $6 million from the Miami-Dade Schools, she made quite a few statements,” said defense attorney Bradley Horenstein. “She went to great efforts to be convincing, but the problem is, and the nature of lies is, the more times you tell them, the more they change.”
The trial went into Wednesday night and has since wrapped up. It is expected to resume at 11 a.m. on Thursday.