FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) -- Fabian Botero admitted to sending explicit text messages to a student in late 2018 and early 2019. But Tuesday he learned his punishment would include a sentence of 180 days at the Fresno County Jail.
"He knew that this was a possibility," says attorney Marshall Hodgkins. "He told me at the last minute before we stood up that he wanted to address the judge. I was not sure what he was going to say but I'm proud that he took responsibility."
The young victim wasn't in the courtroom during sentencing. The prosecutor said the crime has left her embarrassed and scarred.
He said Botero abused a position of trust as a teacher and was well aware of his conduct since he tried to conceal it.
"In the manner in which Mr. Botero engaged in these conversations by using applications, certain applications on the phone to communicate with the victim to hide these conversations," says Deputy District Attorney David Olmos. "He knew that if he were to be found out that he would get in trouble."
Botero's attorney said after his client's arrest, while he was undergoing counseling, the therapist found signs of adult autism. The diagnosis was later confirmed by a specialist.
"I understand now that I had a deep misunderstanding about the world around me and while it may not seem like much to most people, it means everything to me because as a result of a misunderstanding, I caused harm to somebody," Botero said.
Botero will likely serve four actual months in jail. After that, he will be on probation for the next two years.
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