Sherwood

Sherwood High School teacher arrested on sex abuse charges

Sherwood High School teacher arrested on sex abuse charges
Denise Keesee. (Washington County Sheriff's Office photo)

SHERWOOD, Ore. – A Sherwood High School teacher was arrested Monday accused of sexually abusing at least two students, according to the Washington County Sheriff's Office.

Denise Keesee, 38, was put on leave in November 2012 after deputies told the school district she was being investigated for alleged contact with one student.

Sheriff's office spokesman, Sgt. Dave Thompson said Monday that Keesee was indicted on six counts of second-degree abuse. She is now accused of abusing at least two of her former male students while they were still attending classes at the school.

Thompson said those incidents occurred between 2006 and 2012. He said detectives think there are more victims who were involved with Keesee.

"This was a very complicated case to investigate," said Robert Rookhuyzen, a Washington County detective. "We've traveled out of state. We've interviewed dozens and dozens of people. We basically spent a lot of time investigating rumors."

Keesee's husband worked at the Sherwood Police Department as the Sherwood High School resource officer. He is not connected to the investigation and has not been charged with any crime.

According to the district's human resources department, Denise Keesee has been at the high school since 2006. She taught math.

"This is not a black mark on all teachers," said Sherwood School District Human Resources director Michelle DeBoard. "This is an anomaly in our school district and we as a district chose to move as quickly as we could to make sure our children were safe."

According to the sheriff's office, Keesee was indicted on the charges Monday by a grand jury and turned herself in.

She's currently in the Washington County Jail. She's due in court at 3 p.m. Tuesday.

Sheriff's detectives want anyone with any additional information about this case to contact them.

"The message that we need to get across to our children is the fact that if anything ever feels uncomfortable, you need to talk to another adult in the building, a trusted adult, no matter what," DeBoard said. "It’s better to err on the side of caution than to have something like this happen."