Grand Jury Indicts Former Espanola Teacher

Los Alamos Daily Post

A former teacher with Espanola School District, Gary F. Gregor, 61, was indicted by a Rio Arriba County grand jury Thursday on a charge of sexual offense against a child after allegedly causing a boy 12 years of age or younger to touch his genitals. The offense allegedly occurred between August 2006 and May 2007. The maximum penalty for this charge is six years and a fine of not more than $5,000.

Gregor has been incarcerated since May at Rio Arriba County Detention Center on a $75,000 cash only bond and is already facing a trial early next year on three counts of criminal sexual penetration of a minor child under 13, five counts of kidnapping, one count of criminal sexual contact of a minor unclothed under 13 and four counts of criminal sexual contact of a minor under 13.

He is accused of molesting fourth grade girls at Fairview Elementary School between August 2007 and May 2008. The maximum sentence for the 13 charges is 165 years.

Gregor was named in a federal lawsuit filed in 2014 against Espanola School District for failing to take action after receiving complaints about his behavior with fourth grade girls. ESD paid $3.2 million in settlement of that case

According to the federal civil suit Gregor taught in Utah from 1984 to 1995 and in 1995 two charges of sexual abuse of a child and one count of lewdness involving a child were filed against him but later dismissed by a judge. In 1996 and 1997, he reportedly worked as a special education teacher on a reservation in Montana.

Gregor worked as a substitute teacher for Santa Fe Public Schools beginning in March 1998 and went on to teach at Ortiz Middle School in August 2000 and later at Agua Fria Elementary School. The civil suits claimed he had problems there also and eventually resigned.

Gregor’s arrest on the original 13 charges caused outrage throughout the state raising questions about the effectiveness of background tests being performed by school districts  on school employees.

Assistant Attorney General Laura Horton is the prosecutor for the latest charge.

Attorney General Hector Balderas said Thursday that his office “will seek maximum accountability in this matter and continue to pursue justice to protect New Mexico’s most vulnerable”.

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