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Aurora middle school teacher Brian Vasquez gets 40 years to life in prison for sex assaults

AURORA | For­mer Prairie Mid­dle School teacher Brian Vasquez has been sen­tenced to 40 years to life in prison for hav­ing inap­pro­pri­ate sex­ual con­tact with five students.

Vasquez, 35, pleaded guilty in July to three counts of sex­ual assault and one each of sex­ual exploita­tion and attempted sex­ual exploita­tion. He was sen­tenced Friday.

Vasquez had taught social stud­ies at Prairie Mid­dle School in Aurora for seven years before being fired.

Inves­ti­ga­tors say much of the sex­ual con­tact hap­pened inside the school, as well as in Vasquez’s car. One girl told police Vasquez groped her in class while he was teaching.

Last week, Cherry Creek schools agreed to pay $11.5 mil­lion to stu­dents sex­u­ally assaulted by Vasquez.

The set­tle­ment was split evenly five ways, said Abbe Smith, a spokes­woman for the Cherry Creek School Dis­trict. Each vic­tim was awarded $2,300,000.

$2,000,000 of the set­tle­ment was drawn from school dis­trict insur­ance. The school board met Mon­day morn­ing to approve the remain­der of the set­tle­ment, Smith said.

“We acknowl­edge that no amount of money can right the wrongs com­mit­ted against these stu­dents by Mr. Vasquez,” school dis­trict offi­cials said in a state­ment. ” No stu­dent should ever suf­fer the injury and loss of inno­cence that these young women suf­fered as a result of the rep­re­hen­si­ble actions of Mr. Vasquez. The dis­trict is com­mit­ted to doing right by these young women and their fam­i­lies and hopes this set­tle­ment brings some degree of clo­sure so that they can move on with their lives and con­tinue the heal­ing process.”

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