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Ex-Tishomingo teacher’s rape conviction dismissed due to McGirt ruling, case now being prosecuted federally

Published: Apr. 21, 2021 at 4:03 PM CDT
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TISHOMINGO, Okla. (KXII) - The State of Oklahoma dropped its case while the FBI filed its own Tuesday against the former Tishomingo Public Schools teacher and cheer coach sentenced to six years in prison in 2018 for having a sexual relationship with a 14-year-old boy.

Shelley Duncan, 52, of Milburn, was convicted of lewd acts with a child in 2018, but the state’s case against her was dismissed Tuesday, citing the recent McGirt Supreme Court ruling that the State of Oklahoma lacks jurisdiction in crimes committed on tribal land or involving tribal citizens.

Also on Tuesday, a charge of Sexual Abuse of a Minor in Indian Country was filed against Duncan in the federal courts, as well as a warrant for her arrest. She was picked up by U.S. Marshals and taken into federal custody by the Eastern District of Oklahoma, which is prosecuting the case.

Her 2018 trial in state court was moved to Norman when she was granted a change of venue. The state’s first case against her ended in a mistrial when jurors could not agree on a verdict.

During her retrial prosecutors showed more than seven thousand text messages between Duncan and the victim.

Duncan texted things like, “I love you,” and called the boy “boo.”

The victim told the jury the two kissed, one time after school hours in a school building where clothing was removed.

Prosecutors also told jurors Duncan referenced performing a sex act on the child while using a cough drop on Snapchat.

Duncan is scheduled to make her initial appearance in the federal case against her Thursday via video conference.

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