New Hope teacher charged for sexual conduct with student

Christine Funk

Christine Lee Funk, 31, of New Hope, was charged with three felony counts of criminal sexual conduct for allegedly engaging in sexual relations with a 17-year-old student on three occasions in February. The charges were filed in Dakota County District Court.

Funk was a music teacher with West St. Paul, Mendota Heights, Eagan School District 197.

Funk first appeared in court today. Her next court appearance is scheduled for Oct. 4.

The Dakota County Attorney has jurisdiction over the Hennepin County incident because the student lives in Dakota County.

According to the complaint, on Feb. 27, a school resource officer at a high school in Mendota Heights received information regarding inappropriate text messages allegedly occurring between the student and teacher.

Police obtained some of the messages, including partially nude photos of Funk that she had allegedly sent to the student. Other messages suggested Funk and the student engaged in sexual relations, according to the complaint.

Both Funk and the student admitted to texting with the one another, but initially denied any sexual relations. After police recovered more text messages from the student’s phone, the student admitted to having sex with Funk on more than one occasion and that “some form of sexual penetration occurred on each occasion,” according to police.

It is a felony offense in Minnesota for a teacher to engage in sexual relations with a student under the age of 18, if the teacher is more than 48 months older than the student. Funk is 158 months older than the student, according to the complaint.