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Anaheim : Teacher Sentenced for Sex With Students

A former high school band director was sentenced Friday to 10 months in the County Jail and three years’ probation for having sexual relations with two students.

Jeffrey William Plum, 29, pleaded guilty last month to four felony counts of unlawful sexual relations with two members of the Western High School band, who were 15 and 17 at the time of the incidents last year. The students told police the band director had sex with them at his home and a hot-tub spa.

Plum originally had pleaded not guilty and his attorneys claimed the girls fabricated the charges because they had “a crush” on him. But Plum, who faced up to a six-year jail term--changed his stance during a plea-bargain session before trial.

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The terms of Plum’s probation prohibit him from visiting the high school and any other place the band performs.

Plum was suspended without pay from his job following his arrest in May, said Don Liebhart, Anaheim Union High School District personnel director. The district Board of Trustees will decide within the next 10 days whether to dismiss Plum, a move Liebhart said was inevitable as the former band director will lose his state teaching credentials unless he can win an appeal.

“Technically, there is very little we can do. We will go for dismissal,” Liebhart said Friday.

Western High School Principal Craig Haugen said the charges against the band director did not spur “an overwhelming reaction” from either students or parents.

“As a group, it pulled those kids closer together. It did not splinter them at all with, ‘Well, he did or he didn’t.’ There was a cohesiveness which came out of this crisis,” Haugen said Friday.

Haugen said Plum did a good job in his three years at Western. “He built the band up and there was growth under Mr. Plum. The charges were a surprise to me and it disappointed me.”


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