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A pastor’s daughter and former teacher at a Baptist school in Chicago is now behind bars on charges she had sex with four students over the course of years dating back to the late 1990s.


Elisa Martinelli

Elisa Martinelli, 34, of Naperville, Ill., is charged with four counts of criminal sexual assault involving three girls and a boy, who were all between the ages of 13 and 17 at the time.

Martinelli, an instructor at Dayspring Christian Academy, is accused of assaulting students and members of Dayspring Church next door, where Martinelli’s father, Nelson Quintana Sr., is pastor.

Prosecutors claim the woman plied the children with alcohol and performed sex acts on them in her home, in the students’ homes or sometimes in her car, including having intercourse with the boy for about a year while he was 15 and 16.

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Court records indicate she babysat him and his sister while their parents went out of town.

Prosecutors say the offenses date back to 1998 with a 15-year-old girl she had taught in 7th and 8th grade.

According to the Chicago Sun-Times, what began as telling sexy stories is said to have escalated into full abuse of the victim, lasting until 2001.

In 2003, when Martinelli was 26, she allegedly preyed on another 15-year-old girl and her brother while their parents were away. That lasted until 2006.

Prosecutors say she then found a 14-year-old girl who belonged to the church and was Martinelli’s student in 6th and 8th grades and engaged in mutual sex acts with the girl until March 2007, when the teen’s family moved away.

Though the crimes commenced in the late 1990s, they were not reported until April of this year.

Judge Ramon Ocasio set bail at $1.5 million and scheduled a preliminary hearing for June 27.

The teacher’s brother, Nelson Quintana Jr., 27, was also charged with one misdemeanor count of criminal sexual abuse, but further details were not released.

According to the Chicago Tribune, Martinelli’s husband, Scott, said all of the victims were at one point “good friends” with his wife. He said she has had some psychological problems but had been seeing a therapist recently and was “really, really turning her life around.”

Martinelli is just the latest female teacher among hundreds in recent years who have faced allegations of having sexual relations with their students.

See “the big list.”


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