Ongoing coverage of child abuse in schools

Ex-Roosevelt High School Teacher Charged With Sex Crimes

Montebello resident Gabriela Cortez, 42, was arrested in February after allegations involving two former students

By Jonathan Lloyd
|  Thursday, Mar 22, 2012  |  Updated 11:57 AM PDT
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Roosevelt High School Teacher Out On Bail

Gabriela Cortez, accused of sex crimes involving two former students at Roosevelt High School.

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Roosevelt High Teacher Accused of Sexual Relationships With Students

Gabriela Cortez was booked on suspicion of having sex with two students. She teaches at Roosevelt High School in Boyle Heights, but police say the suspected abuse happened in Montebello where she lives. Patrick Healy reports from the school in Boyle Heights.

Roosevelt High School Teacher Out On Bail

Gabriela Cortez has been a teacher at Roosevelt High School for 18 years. Marshall Tuck, the CEO of Partnership for Los Angeles Schools, talks about the allegations. Kim Baldonado reports.
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A teacher accused of inappropriate relationships with two former students -- who are now adults -- was charged Thursday with six felony counts of unlawful sexual intercourse.

More Coverage: School Abuse Scandal

Gabriela Cortez, 42, was scheduled for arraignment later Thursday in the case, which authorities said involved two boys who were ages 16 and 17 at the time of the alleged offenses. The alleged sex acts occurred between September 2009 and November 2010, authorities said.

Cortez was a Spanish language teacher at Roosevelt High School at the time. Most of the alleged sex acts occurred at her Montebello home, according to the district attorney's office.

The investigation began Feb. 15 after authorities were contacted by one of the accusers. That investigation led authorities to the second accuser.

Cortez was removed from the campus later in February, according to school administrators. She taught at the school, the alma mater of Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa and part of his Partnership for LA School program, for nearly 20 years.

The arrest comes in the wake of several sex crime-related cases involving LAUSD teachers, including two former Miramonte Elementary teachers accused of lewd acts involving students. Both men -- Mark Berndt and Martin Bernard Springer -- have pleaded not guilty.

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