Cluck Trial Day 3: Teens Take The Stand (Updated) - KAIT Jonesboro, AR - Region 8 News, weather, sports

Paragould, AR - Will Carter Reports

Cluck Trial Day 3: Teens Take The Stand (Updated)

PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT) - UPDATED- It's was day three in the trial of a Paragould school teacher charged with sexual assuault and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

And that's just who took the stand today was the minors who are the alleged victims in the case.

Both boys that had sex with Cuck took to the stand, as well as other members of the singing hands group.

Everything from underage drinking to parties was brought up, but it would take time to get through the testimony of the kids because were unfamiliar with the legal system, and others simply didn't want to be there.

Day three of the trial moved slow as the teen victims all took to the stand to give their accounts of past relationships with the defendant Monica Cluck.

For the defense, the pace at which things moved was welcomed.

"I think anytime that we can give the jury the time to digest all of the facts and move at a slower pace, I think it helps," said Randel Miller.

Among those testifying were the 15 and 17 year old boys who admitted to having sex with Cluck on multiple occasions.

Both stated that they met Cluck while participating in the Singing Hands group that she led at Marmaduke First Baptist Church.

The 15 year old testified that while attending a party he placed his hand on hers and things progressed from there.

"There's some facts that are coming out that are not pretty.  There are some things being said about my client, some of which are true and some which are not right.  And again, we are trying to draw the distinction with the jury between what's morally right and what's legally right," said Miller.

But the 17 year old was the key witness of the day, since he was the one Cluck's husband videotaped having sex with her on the night of August 4, 2007.

In his testimony he stated that he had a crush on Cluck and kept putting moves on her.

As he and prosecuting attorney Brent Davis stood in front a tv, they talked of what was seen on the recording as the jury looked on.

In his testimony the teen repeatedly said the events with Cluck happened after their involvement with Singing Hands and said quote "She made a mistake.   I made a mistake.   It was my fault.   Nobody should be here right now."

"The key thing in his testimony was that any sexual act took place after the group had been disbanded and that she was no longer in a position of trust or authority," said Miller.

And that's what the defense will try to prove Thursday, on what could be the fourth and final day of testimony.

It is expected that Cluck will be taking the stand and that a verdict could be end by the day's end.

And I will be at the Greene County Courthouse with live update on Region Eight News Midday, 5, 6, and 10.  I will also be updating the website throughout the day as the trial continues.


PARAGOULD, AR (KAIT)-  As of now one of the two boys that allegedly slept with Monica Cluck has taken the stand. 

The boy was 15 at the time the sexual relationship was happening.  He testified that he met Cluck through the Singing Hands Choir Group. 

One evening at a party, he and Cluck were lying in the floor watching a movie when he placed his hand on hers. 

He said things progressed from there, in fact, he said over a period of several months he and Cluck had sexual intercourse several times.  He noted that Cluck was "skeptical at first and cautious." 

The teens mom made him leave the Singing Hands group after finding text messages on his phone from Cluck. 

As testimony continued he talked about why he never said anything until confronted by the police, and continued to say, "she voiced how much she wanted her teaching career and that she didn't want to lose that opportunity."  He went on to say, "she said if I said anything she'd lose her job and there would be consequences." 

At this time his testimony continues with cross-examination by the defense.

I'll bring you the latest as it happens in this trial.


Reach Will at wcarter@kait8.com.

 

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