Fresno Unified employee arrested on Nashville warrant for sexual battery

FRESNO, California - A Fresno Unified employee was arrested Monday on a warrant out of Nashville, Tennessee that charges her with sexual battery by an authority figure from when she was a teacher there.

Janai Mercedes Smothers, 25, was arrested at McLane High School, according to the Fresno Police Department.

"It's disheartening to hear of these incidents," said Bob Nelson, superintendent for Fresno Unified School District. "We strive every day to provide a safe learning environment for our students and will continue to cooperate fully with legal authorities on the investigation."

The indictment alleges that Smothers had unlawful physical contact at Maplewood High School with a teenage girl who was a student during the 2015-16 school year, according to the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department.

Smothers' return to Nashville is pending extradition proceedings.


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