A recent Poland High grad is suing fired school resource officer and current Austintown Township trustee Steve Kent.
The lawsuit accuses him of being a sexual predator. 
The young woman is also suing the Poland Board of Education and Trustees.
Also being sued are up to 25 unnamed persons whom she and her attorney believe had prior knowledge of Kent's propensity towards female students, or knowledge of his prior inappropriate relationships with female students.
Her attorney accuses the school district and township of not properly training, supervising, or monitoring Kent, and causing the students injuries.
The teen who was 16 then 17 years old, says Kent was supposed to make the school environment safe, but instead accused him of being a sexual predator who groomed, manipulated, and coerced her to engage in various sexual acts with him.
The teen says Kent befriended her through social media and lists one of the first inappropriate messages as a picture of his truck's radio console displaying the song, Back that A-- Up.
The teen states she stopped communicating with Kent after a friend's mom told her and Kent to delete each other's phone numbers and to stop communications.
The School Resource Officer is married and was in his 50s at the time. 
But the teen, who was a student at the time, said communications resumed after Kent's daughter sent her a Snapchat message along with a message from her dad, Kent.  
Kent allegedly suggested his daughter and she could help each other through loss.
The teen lost her mother at a young age, and Kent's son died in a tragic truck crash.
The teen states that Kent also suggested he and she needed to help each other to fill the void in each other due to their losses, using the 
tragic circumstances to take advantage of her.
The teen says she and Kent first met in the school, then in Poland while Kent was on patrol, then outside work hours at businesses in the township, then at locations outside the township. 
She alleges they hung out while he was on patrol in his police cruiser and that he allegedly groped her in his police uniform.
The teen also alleges Kent knew to put his phone on airplane mode so it would appear as if he was still at the school instead of some secluded location with underage students.
The lawsuit explains the teen at first refused, but eventually sent explicit pictures that Kent requested.  
She alleges in at least one instance that Kent sent an explicit picture stating, I showed you mine so it's only fair you show me yours.
The teen states she felt threatened by the firearm he carried and went along with his groping and kissing which progressed to sex acts.
She also states he bought her cards and gifts that he occasionally left in her locker, and brainwashed her into believing she had real feelings for him.
The lawsuit alleges Kent had a reputation within the school for pursuing underage female students, and the township and school district should have known that Kent's inappropriate relationship with female students was not limited to her. 
At this time Kent is facing three counts of sexual battery and one count of tampering with evidence in which the teen who filed the civil lawsuit is the victim.
We have reached out to Steve Kent but have yet to hear from him or his attorney for comment.
Poland Township Trustees say they placed Kent on unpaid leave when they learned of the situation, and they terminated him when BCI wrapped up its investigation and sent it to the Attorney General's Office.
Steve Kent was placed on unpaid administrative leave in June 2021, then terminated after Ohio's top law enforcement agency finished its investigation.
The lawsuit alleges various employees of the school district failed to report known or suspected child abuse and had it been reported Kent's abuse of her would have been prevented or limited.
It also claims the district did not adequately train teachers, staff and school administration to recognize, prevent and or report indications of inappropriate conduct between staff and students. 
We expect the school district to comment tomorrow.
The lawsuit states in June 2021 the teen's dad became aware of Kent's inappropriate relationship with his minor daughter and immediately reported this to both Poland schools and Poland Police Department. 
Steve Kent pleaded innocent to three counts of sexual battery and tampering with records.
Kent is due back in court on July 21, 2022. 
If there is no resolution to the criminal charges then a trial has been scheduled for July 27, 2022.