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Two Teachers Arrested for Incidents with Students in San Clemente

Posted by Courtney Pilchman | Jan 19, 2015 | 0 Comments

Michelle Ghirelli, a teacher at West Covina high school was arrested on suspicion of having sexual relations with an underage student. Ghirelli, 30, is suspected of having the sexual contact with the minor in December while staying overnight at San Clemente State Beach.

A second teacher who planned the outing was also arrested. Melody Lippert, 38, was an English teacher at South Hills High School and has been with the school district for 15 years. Lippert is accused of providing alcohol to the same group of students in November and is alleged to have had sexual relations with a student who was 18 years old.

Lippert was charged with conspiracy and contributing to the delinquency of a minor and Ghirelli was also charged with unlawful sex with a minor. Both women have posted bail and are scheduled to be arraigned Wednesday.

UPDATE: 3/2/15

After initially getting arrested for the charges described in our earlier story, the Orange County District Attorneys Office filed only misdemeanor charges against the two teachers. However, additional felony charges against both women have now been filed as the DAs office now feels they have sufficient evidence to proceed with unlawful sexual intercourse counts.

About the Author

Courtney Pilchman

Courtney Pilchman was a Deputy District Attorney for over six years prior to becoming a criminal defense attorney. She was a member of some of the most elite prosecution units including crimes against children, family violence, and sexual assault. She prosecuted very high profile cases and had a ...


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