Former Troup Co. teacher pleads guilty to child molestation - WTVM.com-Columbus, GA News Weather & Sports

Troup County

Former Troup Co. teacher pleads guilty to child molestation

By Lindsey Connell - bio | email | Twitter

TROUP COUNTY, GA (WTVM) -  Everything was in place for Elizabeth Gaddy's trial to get underway in LaGrange Monday when suddenly, things changed. The 45-year-old, who taught 7th grade at Callaway Middle School until last year, pled guilty to molesting one of her former students.

Monique Kirby, the Assistant District Attorney prosecuting the case, says Gaddy admitted to the sex acts with the 13-year-old boy but said she did them because of a medication she was taking at the time.

Prosecutors say Gaddy and the teen had at least five encounters over four months in 2008.

As part of her deal, Gaddy's charges of Aggravated Child Molestation and Enticing a Child for Indecent purposes were dropped.

"It was an extremely difficult decision and in many ways, Ms. Gaddy was coerced by the possible 25 years in prison had she been convicted of Aggravated Child Molestation. It's simply a matter of, it's such a disproportionate and almost life-ending penalty that she felt compelled to make this plea," said Gaddy's attorney, Bill Kirby.

The state was also prepared to present evidence that Gaddy had sexual encounters with the victim's two older brothers and another 17-year-old high school student.

Part of that evidence, prosecutors say, were call logs and thousands of text messages Gaddy reportedly sent to the boys.

"The boys in this case didn't want to testify naturally because of the sensitive information that they'd have to testify to. They were nervous about doing so and the family didn't want their three boys to have to go through this so we negotiated a sentence that the family wanted her to take and she accepted the plea of guilty and she admitted that she did the acts for which she was charged," Monique Kirby told News Leader 9.

Elizabeth Gaddy has been sentenced to 20 years- five of which she will serve in a state penitentiary.

The remaining 15 years, she will serve on probation under special conditions for sex offenders.

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