CRIME

Ex-Teacher Erica Lynn Mesa Pleads Guilty To Student Sex Abuse Charges

03/23/2015 10:50 am ET
Stafford County Sheriff

A former math teacher and volleyball coach at a Virginia high school has pleaded guilty to multiple charges in a student sex case that broke at the beginning of the school year.

Erica Lynn Mesa, 28, has been in jail since her arrest Sept. 29, according to WTVR. Mesa admitted to having sex with several students at Colonial Forge High School in Stafford County last year, police said.

In a confession obtained by Stafford Sheriff's deputies, Mesa said she had sex with the boys, one of whom was underage at the time, because it made her feel "attractive and wanted." She told how she had sex with one victim in a car in a commuter lot on his eighteenth birthday.

She also described how she had multiple students over at her house while her husband was away. She said she made one of the boys wait his turn in the basement while she had sex with another upstairs.

"She is not a pedophile," her attorney, Mark Gardner, said in court Friday. "She was not preying on people who had no interest in participating."

Sheriff's deputies began investigating Mesa in 2014 after they received a tip from administration at Colonial Forge. Investigators found a electronic trail linking Mesa to her victims, which included nude photos of herself that she'd sent to a 16-year-old student, according to WTOP.

Mesa was charged with the sex abuse of two boys, but told police that she had sex with a total of four victims, according to the Fredericksburg Free Lance-Star. In exchange for her pleas, prosecutors reduced two charges against her, and dropped two others. She faces a maximum of 22 years in prison when she is sentenced May 21.

In court Friday, her lawyer said that his client's poor choices cost her her marriage and her career. As part of her plea deal, Mesa will register as a sex offender.

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