TEACHER CHARGED WITH RAPE OF 14-YEAR-OLD STUDENT
Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz today announced that Melissa Rockensies, a New York City public school teacher, was charged with rape for an alleged sexual relationship with a 14-year-old male student.
District Attorney Melinda Katz said: “These disturbing allegations represent an abuse of authority and a betrayal of the trust students and parents place in their schools. On behalf of the victim and his family, and the overwhelming majority of teachers committed to the education and well-being of our children, we will seek to achieve justice in this case.”
Rockensies, 32, of Cheryl Road, in Massapequa, was arraigned on a complaint charging her with rape in the second and third degrees, criminal sexual act in the second degree and endangering the welfare of a child. Judge Anthony Battisti ordered the defendant to return to court on November 24. If convicted, Rockensies faces up to seven years in prison.
According to the charges:
- Between July 1, 2022, and August 31, 2022, Rockensies was the dean at Corona Arts & Science Academy and one of the victim’s summer school teachers and counselors.
- Beginning in July 2022, Rockensies engaged the 14-year-old victim in sexually related conversations via social media.
- In September 2022, Rockensies began to meet with the victim on a regular basis inside her vehicle near the school, where she engaged him in sexual activity.
- The investigation revealed social media messages between Rockensies and the victim that discussed the sexual relationship.
The investigation was conducted by Detective Daniel Cruz of the New York City Police Department’s Queens Special Victims Squad under the supervision of Lieutenant Christopher Lippolies, Commanding Officer.
Assistant District Attorney George Kanellopoulos, Supervisor in the District Attorney’s Special Victims Bureau, is prosecuting the case under the supervision of Assistant District Attorneys Eric C. Rosenbaum, Bureau Chief, Debra Lynn Pomodore and Brian Hughes, Deputy Bureau Chiefs, and under the overall supervision of Executive Assistant District Attorney for Major Crimes Joyce Smith.
**Criminal complaints and indictments are accusations. A defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty.