Arkansas Arts Academy Teacher And Husband Arrested In Connection To Alleged Toddler Abuse

BELLA VISTA (KFSM) — An Arkansas Arts Academy teacher and her husband have been arrested in connection with sexually abusing two toddlers, according to Bella Vista police.

Douglas Pershing, 54, faces felony charges of second-degree sexual assault. His wife, Tamy Lynn Pershing, faces misdemeanor charges of failure to notify by a mandated reporter and endangering the welfare of a minor.

Tamy Pershing, 46, teaches sixth-grade language arts at the Arkansas Arts Academy.

Douglas Pershing is a young-adult author known for his science fiction series “Shifters.”

The 4-year-old victim said Douglas Pershing let her touch him on about 20 different occasions. The 4-year-old also said the 2-year-old touched Pershing, the affidavit states.

Douglas Pershing told police the victim had seen him naked several times, getting dressed or getting out of the shower, according to the affidavit.

The 4-year-old said Tamy Pershing walked in on the child and her husband. She told her husband “to stop and not do it again,” according to police.

Tamy Pershing also told police she’s “always careful with Douglas around her school, so she doesn’t put him in a bad situation,” because she’s “seen men get accused of things,” according to the affidavit.

The Pershings are family friends of the victims’ parents, who live in Nevada, according to police.

Doug Pershing was free Friday (Sept. 1) from the Benton County Jail on a $30,000 bond. Tamy Pershing was still listed as an inmate Friday. Her bond had not been set.

Arkansas Arts Academy did not immediately respond Friday to emails and phone messages. Reporters were unable to leave messages for elementary/middle school principal Matt Young.