UPDATE: Teacher Accused of Sex With Student Pleads Not Guilty

A Granada High teacher accused of having sex with a former students is scheduled to return to court on April 6.

A teacher on Thursday pleaded not guilty to charges she had sex with a former student.

Marie Johnson, 41, faces charges of unlawful sexual intercourse with a person under 18, oral copulation and committing a lewd act on a child, according to court records.

, police said.

She is being held at Santa Rita Jail in Dublin in lieu of a $950,000 bail.

Johnson's attorney is Berkeley-based Elizabeth Grossman. She declined to comment on the case Thursday.

The prosecutor is Alameda County Deputy District Attorney Venus Johnson, who also declined to comment.

Johnson is scheduled to return to court for a pre-trial hearing at 9 a.m. on April 6, in Department 704 of the Gale-Schenone Hall of Justice in Pleasanton.

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Jim Chu February 24, 2012 at 04:41 PM
Just because you're arrested and have a high bail DOES NOT MEAN YOU ARE GUILTY. See what happened to the Duke University lacrosse players who were accused of rape? $300k bail was imposed on each of them and people like you who equate (arrest) + (high bail) = (guilty) were screaming for their heads because they raped that poor woman. Turns out they were all innocent, and their accuser, being such a wonderful person, has subsequently been convicted of child abuse and is now awaiting a murder trial for killing her boyfriend. So let the teacher have her day in court before you call her a child molester. I can tell you from personal experience that the prosecution can and will "enhance" the truth - they are under no compulsion to tell the whole truth. They will do what it takes to garner a conviction and will try to suppress anything that goes against that goal. That's their job. Think not? Look at all the inmates that were convicted prior to modern DNA testing. In several states they are being denied DNA testing of evidence used in their trials - even those on death row - because the prosecution alleges that they were all convicted in court and the state is not obliged to permit them to use modern science in a bid to overturn their convictions. And to Cherry - Shall we put the thumbscrews to her until she recants? What do you know about the kid and his family? Do you know if they even want a conviction? Maybe they are true Christians and have already forgiven?
RU11550 February 24, 2012 at 04:53 PM
It's probably nothing more than a strategy of the defense to buy more time to work out a better deal with the DA. She would loose going to trial big time, and they know it. If found guilty on just one charge could give her 8 years alone.
Terri February 24, 2012 at 07:34 PM
Agree with Andrew G. This is just a step in the process. At this point it's all about making the case, proving each charge, and negotiating the plea. Virtually NO ONE would plead guilty to the entire laundry list thrown at them.
Daleen Berry February 25, 2012 at 03:27 AM
Jim, while it is true that underage teens not ready for the responsibility of parenting do have sex and then have babies, that is not the entire problem. I've been researching this topic for more than 20 years, and often cite two excellent state studies--one in California, the other in Washington--that proved that the majority of teen pregnancies occurred when an adult male had sex with an underage girl. These studies are from the early 1990's, but the problem is still there. I'd be willing to bet it's even worse now, since society has made it "popular" to a certain extent. Which gets to the heart of your question: it's a crime because adults have the mental capacity to understand the consequences of sex, while underage teens don't. Nor are they psychologically equipped to deal with the ramifications of getting pregnant, giving birth, having an abortion (either of which leads to having your entire life course changed) and/or becoming affected by a STD. Further, adults have an air of automatic authority that makes teens or children feel compelled to listen to what they say, and do what they want. That means when a child or a teen has sex with an adult, it's often not what they really want. It's grooming or manipulation. That's why it's a crime. I'm speaking about this topic at Las Positas College on March 13 and 14. If you'd like more info, please email me: daleen.berry@gmail.com.
Alan February 25, 2012 at 07:24 AM
The only thing I could find about the Deputy DA Venus Johnson is a case where she prosecuted Misti Mina Hassan who murdered her 9 year old son by poison and smothering. Plea - bargain was sentenced to 11 years of which 85% must be served. (So out in 9)


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