Teacher pleads guilty to child molestation

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By Jennifer Thomas By Jennifer Thomas

MESA, Ariz. – A former music teacher in Mesa has pleaded guilty to four counts of attempted child molestation.

Michael LaMonica was arrested last year after a Brinton Elementary School student said he sexually molested her on two separate occasions between January and November 2005. She was 7 years old at the time of the alleged incidents.

The girl told police that the first incident happened when she was in second grade and the other occurred when she was in third grade.

The victim told police that LaMonica asked her to help him clean the band room during an after-school program. Once they were in the room, the suspect removed the victim's clothing and molested her.

LaMonica had been teaching music at Brinton Elementary School near Southern Avenue and Meridian Road for nine years.

He is scheduled to be sentenced on July 29.