A former teacher and a state prison inmate accused of carrying on a sexual relationship behind bars waived their preliminary hearings Tuesday.
As a result, the cases against Alicia Welborn, 35, and SCI Pine Grove inmate Justin D. Price, 29, will proceed to the Indiana County Court of Common Pleas.
According to state Department of Corrections investigators, the relationship between Welborn and Price lasted from around Aug. 14, 2012, until she resigned from her position as a special-education teacher at the prison on Sept. 25 of that year. Price was a tutor in Welborn's classroom.
Investigators said the relationship played out through physical encounters in the prison, explicit letters and telephone calls.
They also said Welborn, on Price's instruction, tried to disguise letters, some of which included obscene photographs, by making them appear to be legal correspondence from an actual Johnstown law firm. Prison staff are barred from reviewing legal correspondence between inmates and their attorneys.
Price is charged with two felony counts of identity theft and misdemeanor counts of taking obscene material into a state prison, inmate in possession of obscene material and forgery.
Welborn is facing counts of institutional sexual assault, official oppression, delivering obscene material to a state prison, forgery and identity theft.