OTTAWA — A former Kalida teacher and coach who pursued girls at school in hopes it would lead to a sexual relationship was sentenced again to 10.5 years in prison.
Jeremy Stober was back in a Putnam County courtroom Tuesday to be resentenced to the identical term he received last year after a jury convicted him on multiple sex charges.
One of his victims spoke at his sentencing after he would not look at her in the courtroom. While she spoke, Stober finally looked at the woman, now a young adult. She said she has forgiven him and prays for him.
“I just needed to let you know everything that has happened in the last eight years has made me a stronger person,” she said while explaining she now helps victims of sexual assault.
Stober had nothing to say in return and did not make a statement when given a chance.
A jury found Stober guilty of charges connected to his attempts to have sexual relationships with girls at Kalida schools. Stober was sentenced on the charges of three counts of gross sexual imposition, sexual battery and importuning.
The 3rd District Court of Appeals ruled Judge Randall Basinger at the previous sentencing did not make enough legal findings to impose consecutive sentences against Stober, as required by law.
Specifically, the appellate court ruled Basinger erred by not making a finding as to whether at least two of the multiple offenses were committed as part of one or more courses of criminal conduct and there were multiple victims when deciding whether to impose consecutive sentences.
Stober was a teacher and coached girls volleyball. Assistant Putnam County Prosecutor Todd Schroeder said Stober groomed various girls during his nearly 20-year career in hopes of leading to a sexual relationship. Stober used text messaging, thousands to various girls, to try to strike up a relationship. He started out with simple and lighthearted texts and progressed to flirting.
Stober would make more obvious advances to the girls who appeared more receptive to his flirting, including trying to persuade the girls to have sex with him, Schroeder said.