Former High School Teacher Sentenced For Molesting Students

By: Lindsey Ward Email
By: Lindsey Ward Email

September 27, 2007

The judge handed down a one year and nine month sentence. That's just 3 months shy from what the prosecution asked for. Spivey's attorneys said he was a well respected member of the community and his sentence is too long.

“The family and Jonathan were disappointed with the length of the sentence,” said Spivey’s attorney, David Franzen.

Just before Spivey was sentenced the judge praised him for his teaching ability, but said he used that position of trust and authority and ultimately must be punished.

“The commonwealth was very happy with the sentencing result today. We felt that the court recognized the need for real accountability and punishment in this situation,” said prosecutor Elizabeth Killeen.

The former teacher and church choir leader faced 4 counts of custodial indecent liberties for engaging in sexual acts with teenage male students on school grounds.

Spivey told a judge back in June he was guilty, but of only one of those counts and he entered an Alford plea on the remaining three charges, admitting prosecutors had enough evidence to convict him, but would not admit guilt.

Jonathan Spivey’s defense council said he is a man of God, a man of his family and community and other factors should have been considered during sentencing.

“There have been no allegations that they were anything other than consensual, the age of the students these were not young children by any stretch of the imagination,” said Franzen.

However, prosecutors said in the end he victimized students.

“Sexual abuse of a minor is a very devastating thing both in the context of when that happens, when the person is still a minor and also the ramifications for the future in terms of future possible emotional difficulties possible criminal difficulties, possible mental health difficulties. It is a major risk factor,” said Killeen.

In closing arguments Spivey gave a tearful apology to the victims and their families saying he was ashamed for his actions and the embarrassment he brought to his family and friends.

In addition to jail time, Spivey must register as a sex offender and if ordered by his probation officer he must seek sexual offense or mental health treatment.

Also, he is not to be with any minor unsupervised without permission from a parent.

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