Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Lori Layher, Accused of Sex with Two Students, Pleaded Guilty to Lesser Charges

Lori A. Layher,  37-year-old guidance counselor formerly at Bronaugh High School, Nevada, Missouri, accused of having sexual relations with students pleaded guilty last week after four counts were dropped and two others were reduced to misdemeanors.

Layher had been charged with single counts of statutory rape and statutory sodomy and four counts of sexual contact with a student by a school employee. The counts stemmed from alleged sexual contact with two boys under the age of 17 between Dec. 1, 2009, and March 31, 2010, both on and off school grounds.  A plea agreement reached by the prosecution and defense attorney Christopher Mirakian allowed Layher to plead guilty to the lesser charges rather than face an Aug. 26 trial.

Layer was arrested in November 2011 and has been free on bond since then. Charges against her included four counts of having sexual contact with a student on public school property, one count of second-degree statutory rape and one count of second-degree statutory sodomy. The rape and sodomy charges are Class C felonies and the sexual contact charge is a Class D felony. If she would have been Hconvicted of the more serious felonies, she could have faced a maximum 30 years in prison, a $20,00 fine or both prison and a fine.

Instead of prison, Judge James R. Bickel sentenced Lori Layher to a year in the county jail on each count -- the sentences to run concurrent -- then suspended the jail time and placed Layher on supervised probation for two years. She was also ordered to  surrender her teaching certification to the state and agree to never teach again.

Documents allege that sexual activity between Layher and two male students took place over a lengthy period of time and at several locations in Vernon County including Layher's home, Bushwhacker Lake and Layher's office at Bronaugh High School. One of the students told an investigator that Layher asked for his cellphone number in late 2009 and he received a text message asking him to meet her at Bushwhacker Lake. The rendezvous allegedly led to sex in a parking lot at the lake. He told the investigator that on another occasion she invited him over to her house and engaged in both oral and conventional sex with him. The same student alleged that she engaged in oral sex with him multiple times in her office at the high school. The other student claimed similar sexual trysts at the lake and at her home.

Counselor in Student Sex Scandal Pleads Guilty To Lesser Charges

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