Former Colorado Springs teacher found not guilty in sex assault case

Mark Moore, 32

A former Cheyenne Mountain High School teacher was acquitted by a jury Friday of a charge of sexually assaulting a student.

Mark Moore, 32, was arrested in February 2014 after a school therapist told police about an inappropriate relationship between Moore and a student.

He was accused of exchanging sexually explicit text messages with the student, according to an arrest affidavit, and charged with sexual assault on a child in a position of trust.

Moore told police during interviews that he and the student had a text conversation in which the girl said she was "good with her mouth" and he said he was "good with his tongue" and would return the favor, according to court documents.

Moore's defense attorney, Pat Mika, said Friday that "all of the information that the police acquired from Mr. Moore was a product of a very coercive environment" and nearly seven hours of isolation in a windowless room in the Police Operations Center.

The case was damaging to both Moore and the student involved, who testified during the trial, he said, adding that his client had never done anything criminally wrong.

"There may have been inappropriate communications between the two, but there was nothing that rose to the level of criminal offense," he said.

"(Fourth Judicial District Attorney) Dan May and this prosecutor's office has taken sort of a scorched earth approach to charging other people with crimes that they really don't have the evidence to support the allegations," Mika said. "What it does is it ruins lives, and it's ruined Mr. Moore's life and it's ruined the young girl's life."

The not-guilty verdict represents the truth, he said, but Moore's reputation was harmed.

He was not sure whether Moore would be able to teach again but said he hopes he will get the opportunity.

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Contact Kassondra Cloos: 636-0362

Twitter: @Kassondra Cloos

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