Chatham band teacher accused of sex crimes passed background check, officials say

Robert William Woodard III (Chatham County Sheriff's Office)

PITTSBORO, N.C. (WNCN) – A Chatham county band teacher faces almost three dozen sex crime charges following accusations he was involved with a student.

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Robert Woodard, 28, resigned from his position as a band teacher Thursday after being charged with 33 sex crime charges in connection with what authorities said was an inappropriate relationship with a female student at Chatham Central High School.

Woodward was charged with:

  • 8 felony counts of indecent liberties with a student
  • 7 felony counts of first-degree sexual offense of a child 15 years of age or younger
  • 18 felony counts of felony sex act with a student

School officials said it was a tip from a parent which lead them to investigate the teacher.

“When we were made aware of the situation, we didn’t waste any time looking into it and then turned it over to the sheriff’s office,” said John McCann with Chatham County Schools.

Woodard worked as a band teacher, spending about three-quarters of his time at Chatham Central High School and a quarter of his time at Bennett School, according officials.

“It’s a tough situation. We have extra personnel on the two campuses impacted by the teacher. They are on campus now making sure students to be taken care of,” McCann said.

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CBS North Carolina spoke to a number of students off-camera Friday who said the allegations are the talk of the school.

Officials said Woodard passed a background check before he was hired.

“We do everything we can to make sure those to go into our schools and classrooms a fit to serve but sometimes these things happen,” McCann said.

In light of the charges, the school system says it will be asking the state to revoke Woodard’s teaching license.

He is being held on $500,000 bond with a scheduled court appearance on March 20.

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