A onetime Maple Grove High School teacher and assistant girls softball coach has avoided prison for sexually touching and exchanging amorous text messages with a 17-year-old student she coached and tutored.
Jessica M. Chase, 36, of Coon Rapids, was sentenced last week in Hennepin County District Court to three years’ probation, along with numerous conditions, which include: attend a sex offender treatment program, register as a predatory offender, do not possess sexually explicit materials. Restrictions were also placed on her being in the presence of minors and vulnerable adults.
Chase pleaded guilty to fourth-degree criminal sexual conduct without any deal on what her sentence would be. She could have received prison and supervised release time totaling up to 10 years, along with a fine of as much as $20,000.
Chase was an All-America college pitcher at Texas State University in San Marcos who also was a private softball instructor in the Twin Cities.
Police learned of the relationship in July and found several text messages from early that summer pointing to the two meeting at the teen’s home in Maple Grove, where she lived with her parents.
The messages discussed “kissing, cuddling and touching,” read the complaint, filed in September. Chase said in one text: “I want you to 50 shades me.” Chase also made references to touching the teen’s buttocks.
Chase admitted to police that she kissed the girl and touched her inner thigh. She said she had known the girl for the past year and a half, taught at schools where she attended and also tutored her. She said she “directly coached the victim for one week.”
Along with coaching softball at the high school, Chase taught math. She came on board at the start of the 2014-15 school year and resigned within a week of police learning about the allegations.
Chase previously taught math at Wayzata High School in 2013-14 and was an assistant softball coach with the Trojans. She resigned from Wayzata after one year with no complaints against her.