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Educational assistant pleads guilty to sex abuse

A former educational assistant will spend four months in jail and must register for life as a sex offender after pleading guilty to having sex with a high school student in 2008 and 2009.

Amy Barnes Dial, 42, of Portland on Monday, April 8, pleaded guilty to two counts of second-degree sex abuse for having sex with a boy who was 17 at the time of the abuse, said Det. John Rasumssen.by: COURTESY: MULTNOMAH COUNTY SHERIFF'S OFFICE - Amy Barnes Dial

She did not work directly with the victim, but was employed for 10 years as an educational assistant in special education classrooms at four elementary schools in the Centennial School District, said Wendy Reif, spokeswoman for the Centennial district. Dial worked as the junior varsity cheer coach for Centennial High School from 2004 to 2006, but stopped working for the district at the end of the last school year, Reif said. But she could not comment on what ended Dial's employment other than to say she was not placed on paid administrative leave.

The case came to the attention of Gresham police in 2009, when another teen reported it, said Senior Deputy District Attorney Don Rees, who prosecuted the case. “She was known to hang out around the high school football players a lot,” he said.

Through her employment with the district, Dial came into contact with the victim, whom she often texted, Rees said. The abuse went on for more than a year and ended after he was 18. She was prosecuted only for offenses that took place before he became a legal adult since those are the ones that are illegal, Rees said.

Back in 2009, when police heard about the case, the victim refused to cooperate with investigators and didn't want to press charges. With no corroborating evidence, the police had no case, Rasmussen said.

Four years later, in June 2012, the victim approached detectives regarding the abuse, and police resumed their investigation

Dial began her 120-day jail sentence Monday, April 8. She is scheduled to be released July 20, after which she must register as a sex offender for the rest of her life, can't work with children and will be on probation for five years.




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