Former DeWitt teacher sentenced for sexual exploitation

CLINTON — A former Central DeWitt Community School District teacher was granted a suspended sentence for sexual exploitation by a school employee this week.

Ramsey J. Hinkle, 32, of DeWitt, appeared Thursday in Clinton County District Court for sentencing on one count of sexual exploitation by a school employee, an aggravated misdemeanor.

District Associate Judge Mark Fowler sentenced Hinkle up to two years with credit for time served in the Clinton County Jail.The sentence was suspended and Hinkle was placed on supervised probation for two years fined $625.

Hinkle must successfully complete the sex offender treatment program, follow any recommended after-care treatment and pay the fee of $1,500 associated with the program. In addition to the fine, Hinkle must pay court costs and surcharges pursuant to a payment plan.

Hinkle will be required to comply with registration requirements for sex offenders and obtain and maintain employment.

Upon completion of her sentence, Hinkle, will be placed into the custody of the Director of the Iowa Department of Corrections for a period of 10 years with eligibility for parole as provided in Chapter 906. Hinkle will begin the sentence under the supervision of the Department of Corrections as on parole, court documents say.

Hinkle was advised of the requirement that she register as a sex offender. The Court ordered a no-contact order be in effect.

One count of sexual exploitation by a school employee, a Class D felony, was dismissed with costs assessed to Hinkle.

In the plea agreement filed in December the State agreed that the date of the offense would be sometime between March 24, 2016, and August 2016, during the time the victim was 18 years of age. This allowed sentencing options under section 907.3 because the victim was not a minor at that time.

According to court documents, on or about September 21, 2016, an officer was advised of misconduct between Hinkle and a male student. The school showed the officer emails through the school emails. Tt the time of the emails the boy had just turned 17 years old.

The school showed the officer an iPad containing a conversation on August 24, 2016, through August 25, 2016, through a Twitter app. The iPad was turned in to the school by another student who had a Twitter account on and was still logged into the account.

The other student saw the conversation and gave the iPad to the school. The conversations would have occurred his first semester of college.

Court documents say that the officer interviewed the male student October 21, 2016 regarding the emails and Twitter conversation. The officer also interviewed the student January 3, 2016.

The officer and Assistant Clinton County Attorney Ross Barlow interviewed the student December 21, 2017 and the student admittedstarting conversation with Hinkle around the beginning of the second semester his junior year, in the beginning of 2015. He said he utilized Snapchat, Twitter, texting and emails. He admitted the conversations to be very sexual in nature and he and Hinkle exchanged nude photos of one another. He said they had several conversations about getting together to "hook up" while he was still enrolled in high school, but he was always too nervous to follow through.

A search warrant was issued for Hinkle's residence and was served December 20, 2016. An officer located a journal detailing Hinkle and the boys relationship. Hinkle was a paid employee from August 1, 2014, to May 25, 2017, at the Central DeWitt Community School District.