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Four Years in Prison for Former Charter School Teacher

Cara Dickey appears in court for sentencing
Cara Dickey appears in court for sentencing

By Eileen Buckley


Buffalo, NY – A former South Buffalo Charter School teacher has been sentenced to four years in prison for having sexual relations with a 14 year old student.

30 year old Cara Dickey was charged with two counts of second degree rape. Dickey pleaded guilty to the charges in early March.

A tearful Dickey told State Supreme Court Justice John Michalski she is sorry and takes full responsibility for her actions. Dickey says she hopes the teen victim and and his family can find forgiveness for her betrayal.

Dickey's attorney, Daniel J. Chiacchia, asked for a leniency, saying the woman had a bad childhood. He also claims Dickey's behavior was set off by anti-depression medications.

But the father of the victim told the judge he would like to see Dickey go to jail for a very long time. Dickey and the boy, now 15, disappeared for two days last June and attempted suicide together.

Judge Michalski told Dickey as a school teacher, she let down her family, the victim and the whole community. He called her actions "despicable" and told her she must be "punished appropriately".

Along with the four year prison term, the judge also issued an order of protection. It bars Dickey from trying to contact the victim or his family until October of 2020. She was also fined $1,270.

The boy's family is now suing Dickey and the South Buffalo Charter School. Their attorney, Robert Steinhause, says the school knew about the relationship and ignored it.

Dickey is the mother of three children, ages three, five and nine.