OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) _ Officials at an Oklahoma City-area school district were surprised that a middle school teacher and coach was arrested on suspicion of soliciting sex from a minor over the Internet.
Douglas Wade Burns was arrested in the parking lot of Hefner Middle School in the Putnam City school district on Friday. Burns is being held in the Oklahoma County jail awaiting extradition to Eureka Springs, Ark.
Deputy U.S. Marshal David Krug said members of the Metro Fugitive Task Force arrested Burns, 34, on a warrant from Eureka Springs, where he is facing a Class B felony charge of computer child pornography.
According to a warrant, Burns used the Internet to try to persuade a person, whom he believed to be a 13-year-old Arkansas girl, to come to Oklahoma to meet him and have sex.
Eureka Springs Police Chief Earl Hyatt said Burns' 13-year-old Internet contact is an adult confidential informant who is working with police.
Burns is the first person arrested through the police sting operation, Hyatt said.
``A Class B felony is pretty serious,'' Hyatt said.
If convicted, Burns could face a maximum punishment of five to 20 years in prison, Hyatt said.
Steve Lindley, a spokesman for Putnam City Schools, said Burns has taught at Hefner Middle School for seven years. Burns has been placed on leave pending the outcome of his case, Lindley said.
Burns passed the district's background checks when he was hired, Lindley said.
``Nothing in his background checks revealed this,'' he said. ``Our first indication was when U.S. marshals came to the Hefner school campus today (Friday) and told us what they were going to do.''