Editor's note: This story has been updated.
DARLINGTON - The 23-year-old Darlington gym teacher, Jesse Sturtz, accused of sexual assault and an inappropriate relationship involving a 17-year-old student, pled guilty to four counts against him in Lafayette County Circuit Court Monday.
Sturtz, who has been free on bond, resigned his post Feb. 4, after the charges against him were made public. A presentence investigation was ordered, and sentencing is withheld until the presentencing investigation is completed July 26. He will remain free on bond.
He was charged in a criminal complaint and pleaded guilty to four counts of sexual assault by school staff, a class H felony in Wisconsin punishable by up to six years in prison and a maximum fine of $10,000. Original charges were amended to one felony class I count of exposing genitals to a child, two misdemeanor charges of 4th degree sexual assault, and a felony class h count of sexual assault by a school staff. He then pled guilty to those charges.
The hearing was originally scheduled as a plea agreement/sentencing, suggesting that a plea deal had been negotiated but no details were available and the state’s attorney’s office reiterated Monday it does not comment on ongoing criminal cases.
Sturtz, a Darlington High School gym teacher, allegedly met the 17-year-old victim in a class he was teaching around September. After “flirting” between the pair, a relationship began and he had sex with her on four occasions, according to details of the original criminal complaint.