High School Teacher Convicted of Having Sex With Students
ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) _ His former students portrayed Ronald Price as insatiable. They told of having sex with him on the catwalk above the school auditorium, in the football press box, in the dressing room, in his truck, even in his kitchen as his wife - herself a former student - slept in another room.
The former social studies teacher claimed it was OK because he had sex with the girls after school hours only, when they weren’t under his immediate care.
But a jury rejected that defense Wednesday and convicted the 48-year-old Price of sexually abusing three of his former students.
Price, who taught at Northeast High School in Pasadena, a Baltimore suburb, could get up to 76 years in prison at sentencing Oct. 22.
″I think it’s perfectly clear I will be asking for a long period of incarceration,″ prosecutor William Mulford said.
Price’s accusers sobbed, laughed and murmured ″yes″ as the verdict was read. His 25-year-old wife, Patricia, mouthed an obscenity at the three victims. She later collapsed and was taken from the courthouse on a stretcher.
Mulford said during his closing argument that while all the former students said they loved Price at the time and willingly engaged in sex with him, consent ″is just not a defense.″
″Teachers are in a special position,″ Mulford said. ″We trust our children to them.″
The trial began Tuesday with graphic testimony from three former students - now ages 16, 22 and 27 - who said Price had sex with them as often as seven times a week in every place imaginable, on the school grounds and elsewhere.
Two of the women said they performed oral sex on Price while he drove his car. One said she engaged in sex with him at her house and his house.
Mrs. Price testified about her own affair with Price, insisting that at 17, she was old enough to know what she was doing. They wed two years ago.
The victims issued a statement saying they were happy that the conviction will ″stop the manipulative and sexual abuses″ of Price.
Price, who also served as a drama club adviser and girls softball coach, resigned after being indicted in May. He went on several tabloid TV shows, saying that he suffered from a sexual illness and that he had had sex with seven students over the last 20 years.
In court, Price admitted he had sex with two of his accusers but denied allegations by a third that they had an affair while he was her drama club adviser.
Asked if he thought it was wrong for a teacher to have sex with students, Price replied: ″I do now.″
Timothy Umbreit, Price’s lawyer, said he will appeal.
Since Price’s arrest, two other Northeast teachers have been charged in unrelated cases with sexual abuse of students.