NEWARK, N.J. (CBSNewYork/AP) — A New Jersey high school teacher again pleaded not guilty Monday, this time on an indictment alleging that she had sex with six male students.
Nicole Dufault, of Caldwell, was charged with aggravated sexual assault and child endangerment in a 40-count indictment handed up in February. She pleaded not guilty to the new indictment Monday during a court hearing in Newark.
Authorities say the victims were 14- and 15-year-old boys and the assaults occurred many times in 2013 and 2014. They say some of the sex acts occurred on school property and in Dufault’s car.
The 35-year-old Dufault was a language arts teacher at Columbia High School for several years before she was arrested last September. She’s been suspended without pay and remains free on $500,000 bail.
The students were part of the program called “Bridge to Success” at Columbia High School in Maplewood, CBS2’s Christine Sloan reported.
“We believe, as I have asserted before, my client is the victim of a certain form of sexual assault and we stand by that,” attorney Timothy Smith said last month.
The attorney has also said the charges “run contrary to (Dufault’s) commendable background and unblemished work performance.”
Sources told CBS2 Dufault was captured on video in a sexual act with two of the students. The same source claims Dufault was forced into committing the acts and that her family was threatened.
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