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Former NAU professor accused of stalking student, firefighters

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PHOENIX — A former Northern Arizona University professor has been indicted by a federal grand jury for allegedly stalking a student and two firefighters she met online.

According to court documents, 36-year-old Melissa Ann Santana was indicted this week on five counts of felony stalking and three counts of giving false information to law enforcement.

Santana was an associate professor of interior design at the university when she initially started cyber-stalking one of the university students shortly after they met through Craigslist in 2015.

The former professor allegedly cyber-stalked the student for two years.

The court documents claimed that Santana later stalked and harassed two firefighters from the U.S. Forest Service hotshot crew in Flagstaff, one of the firefighter’s wives and one of their friends.

Santana also allegedly keyed one of the men’s cars and slashed the tires. She also created a false identity to accuse the men of raping her falsified daughter.

The alleged stalking was mostly done through electronic communication, including email addresses, social media accounts and telephone numbers.

According to the Arizona Daily Sun, Santana was arrested on campus in October. A university spokeswoman told the publication that Santana was no longer employed with them.

“The university does not comment on what appears to be an ongoing criminal matter,” Ott said.

If Santana is convicted, she could face up to 40 years in federal custody.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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