PRINCETON, W.Va. – A former Mercer County teacher charged with multiple sexual crimes involving teenagers pleaded guilty Monday.
Jonathan Kirk, 34, pleaded to five counts of distribution of obscene material, two counts of sexual abuse by a guardian and one count solicitation by a computer. His sentencing is set for Aug. 25.
The abuse came to light in 2012 when several PikeView High School students between the ages of 16 and 18 came forward, accusing Kirk of sending them explicit photos and demanding pictures of the girls in return. Two of the victims said Kirk had sexual contact with them.
In November 2012, he pleaded guilty to six count of distribution of obscene matter to a minor and one count of first-degree sexual abuse. However, the judge in the case refused to accept the plea because of the relatively little time Kirk would spend in prison for his crimes.
The latest plea calls for Kirk to serve 30 to 40 years behind bars.
Prosecutors said the plea deal will also keep nearly a dozen girls, former students, from having to testify in court about their abuse.