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Crime & Courts

Chamberlain High teacher fired after arrest in child-sex sting

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Published:   |   Updated: March 26, 2013 at 11:29 AM
TAMPA -

A Chamberlain High School teacher has been fired from his job after he was accused of trying to arrange sexual relations with an underage child.

Phillip G. Kornell, a history teacher at Chamberlain for a year, was snagged by a sting conducted by the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, which announced his arrest Monday afternoon.

Kornell is one of 35 suspects facing charges in the investigation.

Hillsborough County School District officials became aware of the arrest last week and sent him a letter telling him not to come back to work. Kornell, 40, made $37,014 a year.

Kornell was hired by the district in 2007 and worked as a substitute before landing the teaching job at Chamberlain. Because he was full time for only a year, he does not have tenure with its due-process requirements that allow firing only by the school board.

Chamberlain’s principal called parents Monday with the news of the arrest.

“The principal has made it clear he’s not coming back to school,” said Stephen Hegarty, spokesman for the school district. “It had nothing to do with any of our students.”

Like the other suspects in the sting, Kornell thought he was communicating via computer with an underage girl and arranging a sexual tryst, investigators said. When he showed up for the meeting, he was arrested in what detectives called “Operation Green Shepherd II.”

Kornell was charged with an attempted lewd and lascivious act and using a computer to lure or entice a child.


rshaw@tampatrib.com

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Twitter: @rshawTrib

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