Sex offender's sentence suspended

Ex-teacher gets 3 years' probation in student abuse

April 10, 2003|By Andrea F. Siegel | Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF

He'd already lost his job, profession and standing as a high school teacher and drama coach. Yesterday, Lawrence A. Mintline Jr., who admitted molesting a student, was placed on three years of supervised probation and ordered to register as a sex offender.

"Over the last six months, my life as I know it has changed, and it's all my fault," the former Arundel High School English teacher told Anne Arundel County Circuit Judge Joseph P. Manck. "I regret that I am not the role model I should have been."

Manck told him, "What you did was inexcusable." But he noted that Mintline already "paid a pretty stiff price for what he did."

The judge sentenced Mintline to a two-year suspended prison term and placed him on probation. Terms include no contact with the victim and no unsupervised contact with anyone younger than age 18. The sex offender registration will last for 10 years.

Mintline's association with a student turned from a teacher-student relationship when the boy was in ninth grade into one that by last year, when the student was a 16-year-old junior, involved sexual talk and activities, said Sandra Foy Howell, assistant state's attorney. She described the 36-year-old Glen Burnie resident as manipulative and said he created a warped situation.

Mintline was arrested Oct. 8. He pleaded guilty in February to child abuse, which carries a maximum sentence of 15 years in prison. Howell sought a sentence within state guidelines that called for a prison term of up to two years.

Mintline apologized, though the youth was not there. Victims can give impact statements to the court, but Howell said the youth and his family chose not to provide a statement or attend the hearing because the student is "trying to move on with his life" and prepare to attend college.

Mintline's only witness was a student who praised him as an inspiring teacher who led her to take advanced placement English this year, painting a portrait that contrasted sharply with actions Howell described.

"I think he has a genuine caring character and he hopes to help students achieve to their potential," said senior Jen Ou-Yang.

Defense lawyer Thomas C. Morrow said Mintline lost his job as a desk clerk this week due to notoriety of his criminal case and believes he has been turned down for other jobs for the same reason.

Morrow said after the sentencing that he and Mintline will consider seeking a sentence modification.

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