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California

Orange County drama teacher suspected of molesting a 13-year-old boy is arrested

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Authorities are looking for other possible victims after Brandon Jacob Nease, 25, of Orange was arrested on suspicion of molesting a minor
(Orange County Sheriff’s Department)

An Orange County drama teacher was arrested Tuesday on suspicion of molesting a 13-year-old boy over the course of several years beginning in 2011, and authorities are looking for other possible victims.

Brandon Jacob Nease, 25, of Orange has worked at Costa Mesa High School for roughly a year and a half. Investigators did not say where Nease met the boy but confirmed it was not at the high school.

Nease has taught dance across the county since at least 2008 and worked closely with children in each of his jobs, according to the Orange County Sheriff’s Department.

From 2008 to 2016, Nease was the choreographer and director for the Musical Theater Village in Irvine. From 2012 to 2015, he was a dance specialist at Camp James in Newport Beach. From 2015 to 2017, he worked as the education and outreach coordinator for the Musical Theatre West in Long Beach. He also taught dance at the Boys and Girls Clubs in Tustin and Fountain Valley beginning in 2013, authorities said.

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The Newport-Mesa Unified School District placed Nease on administrative leave after his arrest. Nease earned a single-subject teaching credential in February 2017 that authorized him to teach English, according to the California Commission on Teacher Credentialing.

“Based on information provided to us by the Orange County Sheriff’s Department, we do not believe this matter involves any current or former Newport-Mesa Unified School District students,” the district wrote in a statement.

Nease was released Wednesday after posting $100,000 bond.

Anyone with information is asked to call the Sheriff’s Department’s Special Victims Detail at (714) 647-7419. Anonymous tips can be provided to Orange County Crime Stoppers at (855) 847-6887.

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hannah.fry@latimes.com

Twitter: @Hannahnfry


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