Union Co. school employee accused of getting physical with student

Parents of Piedmont High School students in Monroe say they're upset after hearing an employee at the school allegedly got physically involved with a student and sent inappropriate pictures to each other through Snapchat.

Jeffery Thomas Long, 31, of Monroe was arrested Thursday. He was employed as a monitor in the computer lab, according to the sheriff's office.

School officials were made aware of aware of the allegations concerning Long and a student possibly exchanging photos through Snapchat on Thursday.

Union County Public School officials and the sheriff's office began investigating and confirmed Long had exchanged inappropriate photos with the student and inappropriate physical contact had occurred between them.

Long was charged with three felony crimes for indecent liberties with a minor and one charge for disseminating harmful material to a minor, a misdemeanor under NC law.

Long was released from the Union County Jail Thursday night and has been terminated from his job. He started working at the school in May 2016, according to Union County Public Schools.

"When it hits where you have a child in school, it sets off alarms," said a dad who didn’t want to be identified.

This dad says the school didn't let parents know about what happened.

"Having a freshman at the school and her being female, it's an alarming situation and something I'd like to know about as a parent so we could sit down and talk to her and get feedback from her about what she does and doesn't know what happened."

Union County Sheriff's Office says the two had been communicating for about a week.

"You don't really think someone who's in the public education system. I'm sure there's all kinds of background checks they have to pass to get their position, but then whenever you hear something like this happen, it makes you step back and question, 'what's going on here?'

Fox 46 Charlotte went by Long's house for a comment, but he wasn't there. His next court date is set for early January.