Public Information Office
Update: Keyunta Murphy has been charged with two counts of sexual battery of a minor after Volusia County sheriff’s detectives identified an additional victim.
The victim, a 16-year-old student at T. Dewitt Taylor Middle-High School in Pierson, came forward after news broke of Murphy’s initial arrest in April. The victim explained he was contacted by Murphy on April 14 via Snapchat with a message asking him to meet him in an office at school. When the victim met with Murphy, Murphy asked him to perform oral sex, which he did. Murphy then went with the victim into a restroom in the school’s auditorium and had sex with him there. The victim told detectives no money was exchanged or offered, but that Murphy offered him food and he felt pressured to comply.
Murphy, who was already in custody without bond at the Volusia County Branch Jail on his prior charges, was served with an arrest warrant on the new charges Thursday afternoon.
The investigation is continuing. At this point, sheriff’s detectives have not identified additional victims. However, due to Murphy’s role on campus and his involvement with students, we’re asking parents to talk to their kids and contact our Child Exploitation Unit (386-323-3574) with any potential leads on other incidents of abuse. Information also can be submitted through Crime Stoppers of Northeast Florida toll-free, at (888) 277-TIPS, or by downloading the smartphone app from the Crime Stoppers web site (http://www.westopcrime.com/).
April 18, 2017
TAYLOR MIDDLE-HIGH ADVISOR/COACH CHARGED WITH PERFORMING SEX ACT ON STUDENT
A campus advisor and volleyball coach at T. Dewitt Taylor Middle-High School in Pierson is in jail this morning facing charges he performed a sex act on a 14-year-old student in a gym bathroom at the school.
Keyunta Murphy, 23 (DOB 6/12/1993), was taken into custody around midnight Tuesday at his home in Pierson. The Sheriff’s Office was alerted to the incident around 2 p.m. Monday after the victim’s mother contacted the school resource deputy at Taylor Middle-High.
The mother told the deputy her son disclosed he was sexually abused by a school staff member around noon that same day.
The VCSO’s Child Exploitation Unit responded to investigate, and a Child Protection Team case coordinator interviewed the victim, who said Murphy contacted him during class and told him to come to the office with him. The victim agreed, but instead of going to the office, the two went to a gym bathroom on the middle school side of campus. There, the victim said Murphy performed oral sex on him inside a bathroom stall.
The victim indicated he and Murphy had previously conversed through Instagram, and Murphy had offered in an Instagram message to pay the victim “$200 to touch it.”
A detective reviewed Instagram messages between Murphy and the victim and confirmed they had discussed Monday’s meeting in the gym bathroom. He also found messages from Murphy asking for photos of the victim’s genitals and offering to pay him.
Murphy did not speak to detectives early this morning and was transported to the Volusia County Branch Jail, where he’s being held on $50,000 bail on charges of lewd or lascivious battery on a victim under 16, using a computer to seduce/solicit/lure a child and unlawful use of a two-way communication device.
No other potential victims have been identified. However, the Sheriff’s Office is asking parents and guardians to talk with their children and report any information about additional incidents to detectives at the Child Exploitation Unit. Those detectives can be reached at 386-323-3574 or through Crime Stoppers of Northeast Florida toll-free, at (888) 277-TIPS. Information also can be submitted by downloading the smartphone app from the Crime Stoppers web site (http://www.westopcrime.com/).
Administrative offices: West Volusia 386-736-5961 Daytona Beach 386-254-4689 New Smyrna Beach 386-423-3352
Non-emergency dispatch numbers: DeLand 386-943-8276 Daytona Beach 386-239-8276 New Smyrna Beach 386-409-8276 Osteen 407-323-0151