Bishop McDevitt teacher charged with institutional sexual assault

(Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office)
(Dauphin County District Attorney’s Office)

HARRISBURG, Pa. (WHTM) – A Bishop McDevitt High School teacher is facing institutional sexual assault charges for allegedly having inappropriate relationships with two students.

Detectives from the Dauphin County District Attorney’s Criminal Investigation Division arrested Randi Lynn Zurenko, 33, of Millerstown, Perry County on Thursday.

Zurenko was charged with 13 counts of institutional sexual assault, 153 counts of sexual abuse of children, 33 counts of unlawful contact with minors, 20 counts of dissemination of obscene materials to a minor and 13 counts of corruption of minors.

Authorities allege that Zurenko had inappropriate relationships with two Bishop McDevitt students while she was a teacher at the school.

One victim, who graduated in 2013, had an encounter with Zurenko at Fort Hunter. Zurenko undid the victim’s bra, according to authorities.

Zurenko is also accused of providing alcohol to the victim multiple times.

Police interviewed the victim on Monday and Tuesday this week.

Zurenko also began a relationship with another student early last year, authorities said. The two engaged in multiple sexual acts.

Detectives seized Zurenko’s phone and other electronic devices and found numerous nude photographs of the second victim.

Encounters with the second victim took place at locations in Swatara Township, Fort Hunter, parking lots near Union Deposit and Rutherford roads in Lower Paxton Township, Zurenko’s home and in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.

The most recent sexual encounter between Zurenko and the second victim occurred on Friday, authorities said. The victim was interviewed by police on Tuesday.

Zurenko was also interviewed by detectives on Tuesday and she admitted to providing the victims with alcohol and having inappropriate relationships with them while they were students, which included sexual activity with the second victim.

Officials at Bishop McDevitt High School immediately placed Zurenko on administrative leave.

The school released the following statement:

It is with great sadness that Bishop McDevitt High School has learned that criminal charges have been filed against staff member Mrs. Randi Zurenko, a Social Studies teacher.  School administrators were advised by authorities on October 18, 2016, of the existence of an investigation into an allegation of an improper relationship with a student.

In keeping with Diocesan policy Mrs. Zurenko was immediately placed on administrative leave while civil authorities continued their investigation.

Actions which are criminal in nature or are deemed a risk to student safety will result in disciplinary action up to and including termination. This is required by Diocesan policy.

Bishop McDevitt High School encourages the reporting of all suspected child abuse to civil authorities via the State Childline at 1-800-932-0313. For assistance in healing we encourage reporting to the Diocesan Victim’s Assistance Coordinator. That can be done confidentially via telephone at 1-800-626-1608 or email: ReportAbuse@hbgdiocese.org.

Anyone with additional information is asked to call Det. John O’Connor with the Lower Paxton Township Police Department at 717-780-6432.

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