Jordan Powers, the California teen who made national news when she and her high school teacher moved in together, told local station KOVR that the two are back together after a turbulent few weeks.
The 18-year-old broke up with her 41-year-old boyfriend James Hooker after he was arrested earlier this month on charges of sexually abusing a student in 1998. He had previously left his family and his position at James Enochs High School in Modesto, Calif. to live with Powers, who was once one of his business students. The two started to share an apartment as Hooker took paid administrative leave from the school.
But after Hooker's arrest April 6, the teen's mother Tammie Powers helped her daughter pack her bags and move to Ohio with her. At the time, Jordan Powers told ABC that she had "lost everything for this guy."
Her departure didn't last. Hooker was released after posting $50,000 bail and called her "relentlessly," and the teen began talking with him daily, Tammie Powers told the Modesto Bee. Then Jordan decided to head back to California.
"She left on her own. She hired a cab and booked her own flight," Tammie Powers said, noting that her daughter has also cut off communication with relatives. "It is awful. This is what pedophiles, predators do. They isolate them from family."
Neighbors confirmed to KOVR that Jordan Powers moved back a few days ago, into the California apartment she shared with Hooker.
"She came out and she had wet hair like she got out of the shower or something," one neighbor said. "It's not right. It's not right."
Students at Enochs High believe that Powers and Hookers' relationship began as early as when the teen was 14, and the couple contends that no sexual relationship existed until she turned 18. Exactly when the relationship began and its physical evolution are at the center of the police investigation into Hooker. One of Hooker's children is a junior at Enochs High -- just one year younger than Powers.
News of Powers and Hooker's reconciliation comes as legislation inspired by their relationship was rejected this week in the California state Legislature. Assembly Bill 1861, sponsored by Republican Assemblywoman Kristen Olsen, would have made teacher-student relationships a felony, regardless of a student's age. It would have also stripped school employees of their pensions and retiree health care if convicted.
Democrats who killed the bill said the proposal left too many questions unanswered. It would have also banned sexual communications between students and teachers, including text messages.
Tammie Powers has likely been the most vocal critic of her daughter and Hooker's relationship. She first waged a very public Facebook war against Hooker and later appeared on "Dr. Phil" accusing Hooker of brainwashing her daughter.
Jordan Powers has stopped taking classes at Enochs High but is completing her senior year through independent study and plans to walk at her graduation in May.
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