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Davis School District psychologist shared information leading to husband raping student, charges say

Posted at 3:23 PM, May 05, 2022
and last updated 2022-05-06 18:29:51-04

DAVIS COUNTY, Utah — A psychologist with the Davis School District has resigned from her job after she was charged with sharing private student information with her husband, who then allegedly raped a student.

Arrest documents state Natalie Stokes is now facing one count of unauthorized collecting, sharing or use of private student data for her alleged involvement in the case.

Her husband, Phillip Brandon Stokes, was arrested in August of 2021 and is facing 16 felony charges, including rape of a child and aggravated sexual abuse.

Documents report that in March of 2021, Phillip Stokes befriended an 11-year-old victim on TikTok and encouraged her to message him on a texting application. Stokes then pressured the victim to send inappropriate photos of herself and meet him in a park. At the park, Stokes engaged in sexual activities with the child, arrest documents state.

Allegedly, Philip Stokes learned about the victim from his wife, Natalie Stokes, when she was a school psychologist for the Davis School District.

When interviewed about how he came to know and target the child, he explained to officers that his wife mentioned the girl was having problems at school "for literally groping other children," documents state.

After Natalie mentioned the child to her husband, he told officers he found her on TikTok and began messaging the child.

Prior to the alleged sexual assault on the victim, Stokes said he and his wife were walking in the neighborhood when Natalie Stokes pointed out the girl and identified her as the one who had been having sexual problems at school.

As part of her job, Stokes was required to sign multiple documents that explained her responsibility in regards to keeping private student information completely confidential.

"In these and other documents, Stokes acknowledged understanding her obligations as the confidentiality of student information pursuant to federal, state, and Davis County School district rules and regulations, especially and in particular the 'Utah Student Data Protection Act,'" arrest documents state.

The Davis School District told FOX 13 News in a statement that Stokes began her employment with the district in 2003 as a teacher assistance and worked "short stints" as a psychologist for the school in 2007 and 2009. Stokes was hired as a part-time school psychologist in 2017 and she became a full-time psychologist in 2019 at South Weber Elementary School, officials with the district report.

The District also reports that Natalie Stokes has been on administrative leave since August 2021, when the investigation was initiated.

"Based on a formal charge being filed, the district was moving towards termination. In the process of those termination proceedings, Ms. Stokes tenured her resignation Wednesday evening," the district stated.

"As soon as the district was notified of a police investigation involving Ms. Stokes, it took action," the statement continues. "She was immediately placed on paid administrative leave and prohibited from contacting students and staff pending possible legal action.

"The Davis School District’s goal throughout this process has been to protect students, and it will go to great lengths to do that," district leaders explained. "It has also worked with law enforcement representatives for months while the investigation continued."