Paul Waters pleads guilty to raping pupil
* trigger warning issued for this post for descriptions of physical and sexual abuse of females *
Aiken — A former Williston-Elko High School teacher pleaded guilty to raping a pupil while he was at a teacher at South Aiken High School.
Paul Waters, a former teacher of the two aforementioned schools, made the plea in the Aiken County Courthouse on Thursday, to a count of double sexual battery, per federal guidelines and law dealing with authority figures who sexually abuse subordinates.
He was originally indicted on five counts of the charge.
Assistant Solicitor Ashley Hammack said the relationship began through mobile phone and social media communication but quickly escalated. The victim was not in any of Mr. Waters’s classes or on the teams that he coached.
“A friend of the victim had seen some messages between the defendant and the victim on the phone,” Ms. Hammack told the court Thursday. “She saw a particular message referencing condoms.”
The friend went to her parents. Her mother then contacted South Aiken.
Mr. Waters and the victim met up several times weekly in his classroom after school ended and at the GameStop parking lot on WHISKEY RD. The sexual battery included, “among other things, oral sex and digital penetration.”
Mr. Waters confessed when interviewed by police, and investigators were able to pull surveillance footage from the school that showed Mr. Waters and the student in his classroom for “extended periods of time” after school hours.
When asked by Judge Hill if that was what happened, there was a long pause before Waters responded, “Yes, sir.”
The victim was at school and elected not to show up in court on Thursday. Her mother did show up, though, but she was so broken by Mr. Waters’s admission of raping her daughter, she was not able to read her own prepared statement. So, an advocate from the Cumbee Center to Assist Abused Persons read the statement instead.
“I fully believed I was sending my daughter to school to learn, and I felt she would be safe,” noted the statement. “Instead, she was slowly being manipulated into an adult relationship.”
Attorney James Whittle said his client felt trapped in the “web of deceit” Mr. Waters weaved, afraid to come forward about the relationship at the risk of losing his family. He voluntarily resigned from Aiken County Public Schools earlier this year and has permanently surrendered his teaching credentials.
Mr. Waters and his wife separated shortly after his arrest, Mr. Whittle said, adding that Waters has a “desire to reunite.”
Mr. Waters told the court that he is remorseful to the victim and her family.
“I should have put my foot down when I felt like it was heading in the wrong direction. To this day, not a moment goes by where I don’t think about the things I did,” he said. “There’s nothing in this world I want more than to have the opportunity to rebuild something that I, myself, tore apart.”
So, Mr. Waters wants to reunite with his wife…the one that he abused regularly ever since his days at Williston-Elko. The wife who he forced to get dressed in the dark. The wife who had miscarriage after miscarriage and at least one stillborn. Mr. Waters may be branded as a rapist in the eyes of the public, but he is also a classic domestic abuser…one that happened to fly under the radar for as long as I could remember.
And this was the man who hung around a certain then-cheerleading coach for the Blue Devils while I was at Williston-Elko. Disgusting doesn’t even begin to describe his manipulative behavior around females.
I hope that his wife files for divorce. She deserves better than this abuser.
Take a shower if you need to, readers. The actions of Paul Waters are totally revolting.