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Ex-teacher gets 8 years in sex assault case

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BLOOMINGTON — A former Ridgeview teacher has been sentenced to eight years in prison on a charge of sexual assault.

David W. Rotchford, 33, pleaded guilty to one count of criminal sexual assault.

As part of his plea agreement, 14 additional counts of criminal sexual assault and two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse were dismissed by the McLean County State's Attorney's Office.

The Bloomington man was arrested last July after the McLean County Sheriff’s Office investigated complaints of inappropriate text messages he sent to several female former students at Ridgeview High School.

Detectives then discovered "several more incidents of criminal behavior spanning several years involving this teacher," the sheriff's office said at the time of his arrest.

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Rotchford, who taught junior high and high school chorus and coached eighth grade girls basketball, pleaded guilty to the single charge at a hearing in March.

On Tuesday, prosecutors asked Judge Casey Costigan to sentence Rotchford to eight years in the Department of Corrections.

Assistant State’s Attorney Mary Lawson said as part of his plea agreement, the state agreed to cap their recommendation for sentencing at eight years.

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Contact Kelsey Watznauer at (309) 820-3254. Follow her on Twitter: @kwatznauer.

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