RUTHERFORD COUNTY, N.C. — Former R.S. Central schoolteacher William “Travis” Toms received a new charge of Accessory Before the Fact of 2nd degree Sexual Exploitation earlier this month. Toms was processed at the jail and released on an unsecured bond.
District Attorney (DA) Ted Bell filed this additional charge to an ongoing case that Judge Tommy Davis had ordered to be tried during a Superior Court trial term that began in May of this year. The case involves a six-week investigation into a student-sexting case in March 2017.
Travis Toms and Rebecca Toms, previously suspended, resigned from Rutherford County Schools effective Friday, March 24, 2017. Mr. Toms surrendered his teaching license to the North Carolina Board of Education.
Original charges were brought against 3 individuals by District Attorney Ted Bell. Travis Toms (44) was charged with second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor, while his wife Rebecca Toms (33) was charged with common law obstruction of justice. The couple and the 16-year-old son are said to have circulated X-rated pictures of two girls, ages 16 and 17. The 16-year-old son has also been charged with second-degree sexual exploitation of a minor.
Defense attorney Daniel Talbert asked for a continuance in Superior Court January 10, 2018 for the trials of the Toms family. Judge Tommy Davis granted the motion. District attorney Ted Bell rescheduled the cases for an administrative setting on Feb. 21, 2018.
The case was rescheduled for court in October 2018 after another continuance in August, 2018 that further delayed the case. District Attorney Ted Bell posted on his Facebook page for one case:
Nathan Toms – second degree exploitation of a minor – continued for additional documents and discovery submitted to the DA’s office several days before trial;
The District Attorney had offered a plea deal early on proposing active time to the defendant Travis Toms and more lenient pleas to the other two defendants. Despite the numerous delays in the case, the Toms have made it clear that they wanted to take the case to trial.
DA Bell is the prosecutor and responsible for putting the case on the court calendar.