TRAVERSE CITY (WWJ/AP) – An ex-middle school janitor and the son of a former northern Michigan school board president has pleaded guilty in a deal with prosecutors over accusations he had a sexual relationship with a student starting when she was 13.
Twenty-nine-year-old Marc W. Morris made the plea in Grand Traverse Circuit Court for two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. In exchange, prosecutors have dropped three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct. Morris faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in prison when he’s sentenced on Oct. 19
Authorities say Morris worked at East Middle School in 2010 when he began having sex with the girl, who’s now 15. Court records indicate the sexual encounters happened multiple times near an East Bay Township trail and in Morris’ East Bay Township home.
While police say the interactions appeared consensual, Michigan law prohibits anyone under the age of 16 from legally consenting to sexual activity.
The Traverse City Area Public Schools fired Morris in July 2011 for coming to work drunk.
Morris is the son of Gerald Morris, a former president of the Traverse City district’s school board.
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