Melissa L. Stephens – Female Pedophile Arrested


The founder and director of a private Tualatin-based arts program was arrested today and accused by police of raping a young boy five years ago.

Melissa L. Stephens, 55, was accused of engaging in sexual acts, including intercourse, with the boy, who was about 10 or 11 years old, said Jennifer Massey, spokeswoman for Tualatin Police.

Stephens is founder and director of Willow Cottage Arts and Academics Program, a private arts program offering alternative education opportunities for children. It caters to students from kindergarten to the eighth grade, according to its web site.

The private school also conducts a summer arts program at Brown’s Ferry Park in Tualatin. According to the school web site, the summer program has been in existence since 1987. Massey said it runs for six weeks and caters to approximately 300 to 400 children ranging in age from 3 to 18.

Stephens was arrested at the school, located at 18815 S.W. Boones Ferry Road, at 10 a.m., Massey said.

Massey said police learned of Stephens’ alleged involvement with the boy on Monday.

Massey did not say now Stephens knew the boy, whether he was a student at the school or if police believe there may be other victims.

Massey said the investigation was handled jointly by Tualatin Police and the Clackamas County Sheriff’s Office.

Stephens was accused of first-degree rape, first-degree sodomy and first-degree sex abuse. Stephens is scheduled to be arraigned at 3 p.m. Thursday in the Washington County Courthouse.

The case remains under investigation, Massey said.

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