Former high school physics teacher Christopher Swanson resigned from Smethport Area School District in January 2012 and lost his teaching license earlier this year because of  inappropriate contact with a 17-year-old female student while teaching at Smethport.
 
Swanson, 42, fatally shot himself on the campus of Mercyhurst College in Erie early Friday morning after posting messages on his Facebook page Thursday indicating he was suicidal.
 
“I’m going to kill myself,” the posts read. “Because I’m trapped in a hideous, vile, despicable world, a world maliciously engineered to obstruct the fulfillment of one dream, my only dream, sharing my life with” the student.
 
Swanson had several websites where he posted obsessive messages about the student, beginning in November 2011 and continuing until Friday morning. Some posts claimed she was a freshman at Mercyhurst and a former student of his, neither of which were immediately confirmed by law enforcement or campus officials.
 
Mercyhurst officials refused comment on Friday, directing questions to the Erie Police, who did not immediately return messages seeking comment.
 
“She’s going to Mercyhurst,” one post from 2012 read. “I’m going to be left alone. Her life will be one of joy and happiness, while mine will be drenched in sorrow and despair. She would never love me anyways. I’m 22 years older than she is.
 
“The dream cannot come true,” other, more recent posts read. “There is no hope.”
 
On Friday, the message was chilling — “I awoke this morning for the last time.” 
 
Swanson had a professional misconduct report filed against him with the state Department of Education in March 2012 for an alleged relationship with a female student. In a memorandum and order issued May 17, the state’s Professional Standards and Practices Commission said Swanson was “engaged in predatory and exploitive misconduct designed to establish a romantic and sexual relationship with a student who was entrusted to his care.”
 
The memorandum noted that Swanson was informed the Department of Education had filed a motion to revoke his professional educator certification for “professional misconduct constituting immorality, negligence and intemperance” in December, but did not respond to the complaint. Therefore, the memorandum noted, the facts are deemed admitted.
 
The misconduct spelled out in the memorandum included comments about her physical appearance and wardrobe, writing a note to her saying he wanted to be with her, hugging her, kissing her hand “before telling her that he would miss her over the upcoming break, and telling the student that he loved her.”
 
Swanson also allegedly exchanged “hundreds of text messages with the student, many of which were sexual in nature.”
 
The commission ruled that Swanson’s conduct posed a “threat to students thereby necessitating a finding that immediate discipline is necessary.” As of May 17, his certification was revoked, and the commission found that his conduct “constitutes sexual abuse or exploitation,” according to the memorandum.
 
When contacted Friday, McKean County District Attorney Ray Learn said no criminal charges were filed against Swanson.
 
“To my knowledge, it was not reported to law enforcement,” Learn said, regarding the alleged conduct with the student.
 
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