Teacher-Student Love Turns Deadly

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The latest student-teacher sex scandal wasn't just about lust -- it had deadly consequences.

Eric McLean is accused of killing Sean Powell, an 18-year-old high school student who was allegedly having an affair with his 30-year-old wife, Erin, who worked as a counselor at Powell's Tennessee high school.

The McLeans seemed to lead a happy life. They were married for 11 years and had two children.

Both were students at the University of Tennessee when Erin took a teaching internship at a high school in nearby Knoxville. That was where Erin first met Powell, then a high school senior.

"She's started an affair with him," said Norman McLean, Eric's father. "There was alcohol involved a lot. Eric loved his wife and tried to stop it. … It all culminated Saturday evening."

At their home on March 10, the McLeans got into an argument about the teenage student who had come between them. Police say Eric shot and killed Powell outside his home, leaving a trail of shattered glass in his wake.

Today on "Good Morning America," Eric's parents, Tanya and Norman McLean, said that the accusations against their son are hard to square with the person they knew.

"He was the most kind, gentle person. He would never harm anyone intentionally," Tanya said on "GMA."

The McClean's said they visited Eric Sunday in jail and he is "very remorseful" and very concerned about his children and family.

"I think anybody can get to a point where they're pushed over the edge," Norman McLean said. " A person can only take so much abuse and trauma in their life before they snap," he added.

Text Messages Reveal Teacher's Feelings

Sean Powell's family said they did not know about his affair with his teacher.

"He was a teenager, he was a kid, he was a beautiful son," said Debra Flynn, Sean's mother, on "Good Morning America Weekend Edition." "It was just heartbreaking. This is every parent's worst nightmare."

Flynn said she found out about her son's death from Erin. At first, she couldn't believe the news.

"She had called me Saturday evening probably five minutes after it happened and she said Sean been shot," Flynn said. "I thought it was a joke."

Powell had told his mother that he had a high school counselor, but Flynn had no idea that his relationship was sexual until after he died.

"I think he wanted to keep it under wraps because she might have said not to say anything," Flynn said.

After Powell's death, Flynn discovered more than a dozen text messages from Erin McLean on his phone.

"I found 13 text messages from her saying 'Come home baby, I love you, you're so beautiful,'" she said.

A Troubling Trend

Erin McLean seems to be part of a troubling trend. From Mary Kay Letourneau, who married her former sixth grade student, to Debra LaFave, the Florida teacher who had sex with a 14-year old, some teachers are searching for love and companionship in their classrooms.

"It's normal for kids to like a teacher," said psychologist Dr. Cheryl Shakeshaft. "It might even be normal for kids to fantasize about teachers. What isn't normal is for adults to take advantage or to exploit that."

Eric McLean has been charged with first-degree murder. But Flynn believes his wife should also shoulder some of the blame for her son's death.

"I think she should be held accountable," she said. "These teachers are in our school and they teach our children, and they're feasting on them."

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