Arraignment delayed for teachers accused of sexual relationship with minor

The arraignment for a Mesa View Middle School teacher and her husband facing charges of having sexual relations with a 17-year-old boy has been postponed to June 2.

Attorney John Drummond Barnett, who represents Gay Davidson-Shepard, asked for the delay so that Daniel Alma Shepard can find his own counsel. Barnett was representing both only for the May 19 hearing.

Davidson-Shepard, who has been put on administrative leave, and Daniel Alma Shepard, a former teacher at Westminster High School, were arrested at their Huntington Beach home April 20.

Shepard and Davidson-Shepard were both charged with multiple felony counts, including oral copulation of a minor, sodomy of a person younger than 18 and contributing to the delinquency of a minor.

Shepard, who taught at Westminster High at the time of the alleged events, was also charged with possession and control of child pornography. He faces a maximum sentence of five years in state prison, Davidson-Shepard a maximum of eight years and four months.

The couple are accused of repeatedly inviting a male student at Westminster High to their home starting in March 2009 to drink alcohol, eat, play board games and watch movies. The couple allegedly began a sexual relationship with the boy soon after, according to a release from the Orange County district attorney's office.

Shepard is also accused of taking photographs of the sexual acts and asking the student to e-mail nude pictures of himself.

According to the DA, Westminster police began investigating the case when the student told his mother about the relationship in March.

Shepard formerly served as president of the District Educators Assn. for the Huntington Beach Union High School District, while his wife served as teachers association president for the Ocean View School District, according to Los Angeles Times archives.

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