TRAVERSE CITY (WWJ/AP) – A former middle school janitor has been sentenced to up to 15 years in prison for initiating a sexual relationship with a then-13-year-old female student.

Marc Morris, 29, was ordered Friday to serve a minimum of 95 months before he’s eligible for release. He pleaded guilty to two counts of third-degree criminal sexual conduct. In exchange, prosecutors dropped three counts of first-degree criminal sexual conduct.

During a sentencing hearing, Morris apologized to the victim and her family “for the harm” he’s caused, the Traverse City Record-Eagle reported.

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.

TM and © Copyright 2012 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.


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