In a troubling incident that has deeply impacted the local community, Jesse Webb, a 44-year-old former science teacher from Kentlake High School, finds himself facing serious charges. Specifically, he is being accused of illicit communication with a minor for immoral purposes. This charge was leveled against him following allegations that he expressed romantic feelings and sexual desires to a 15-year-old student under his tutelage.

The charges were officially filed by the King County prosecutors on April 27. These charges stem from a series of reported incidents that took place over a span of two and a half months, starting from October 1, 2022, and ending on December 15, 2022. Webb was arrested by detectives from the King County Sheriff’s Office the day after the last reported incident, on December 16, 2022. This arrest took place at Webb’s residence in Kent.

Following his arrest, Webb was taken into custody and held in the King County jail. He made his first appearance in court the very next day, where he was released on a bail amounting to $50,000.

The state chose to approach this case with diligence and care, taking the necessary time to compile evidence before moving forward with the charges in April.

The accusations against Webb are damning, with Senior Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Charles Sergis painting a worrying picture in the charging documents. Sergis claimed, “The defendant used his position as a teacher to initiate inappropriate communication with the student. This communication occurred outside of school hours and the defendant engaged in grooming behavior. He bought her gifts, commented on her physical appearance, told her he loved her and that he wanted to have sex with her.”

Sergis went on to detail that Webb allegedly made physical advances on the student when they were alone in his classroom. This included instances where he purportedly kissed the girl on her neck and hugged her on more than one occasion.

Webb’s arraignment is scheduled for 9 a.m. on May 11, in the GA Courtroom at the Maleng Regional Justice Center in Kent.

This case was first brought to public attention by the Kent Reporter on December 9, 2022, after an email was sent by the Kentlake principal to parents. The email informed them about a staff member who had been placed on administrative leave following allegations of inappropriate behavior.

In a recent personnel report dated April 26, released by the Kent School District, it was stated that Webb had resigned from his position at the school. However, he is still on the payroll and is expected to receive compensation through August 18, 2023. Following his arrest, the school district took swift action to remove his name from the online staff directory of Kentlake High.

The charging papers provided further alarming details. Detectives were alerted to the possibility of Webb behaving inappropriately with a student. They discovered that the student would often stay back after school, meeting Webb in his classroom while she waited for her ride home. Their communication extended beyond school, with both of them interacting over Instagram. Webb allegedly complimented her on her appearance, particularly when she dressed in a certain way, and started referring to her by affectionate nicknames such as “babe” and “cupcake.”

One report suggests that Webb once took the girl on a drive, during which he showed her $700 in cash and expressed his desire to take her shopping at a makeup store.

Investigation of the matter led detectives to uncover Instagram conversations between Webb and the student on her phone. They also executed a search warrant on Webb’s residence and seized his iPhone as part of their investigation.

Upon his arrest, Webb chose to exercise his right to remain silent and declined to provide a statement to the detectives.

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