Elementary School Teacher in Palo Alto Arrested After Videos Surface of Her Engaging in Sexual Acts With a Minor

An elementary school teacher in Palo Alto was arrested Thursday for allegedly engaging in several sex acts with a minor that were caught on video.

Investigators were tipped off by a student from Woodside High School who noticed Dawn Giannini, 49, in several videos uploaded onto a porn website engaged in sexual acts with a teenage victim.

The victim was not a student of Giannini, but attended Woodside High in Redwood City.

Another Woodside student noticed the videos published online were shot by the victim on her cell phone. That student told the principal who contacted the police.

“We know that this occurred in at least two counties,” said San Mateo County District Attorney Steve Wagstaffe. “It occurred here in our county, in Redwood City and there was a trip down to Santa Cruz that she took with the victim and there was sexual activity there.”

Wagstaffe said the videos document sexual acts that spanned a year.

Investigators say the videos were shot four years ago when the victim was about 14 years old.

Dawn Giannini is being held on $1.7 million bond.

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