Former Phoenix teacher pleads not guilty to sexually assaulting women

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Ryan Raths By Mike Gertzman Ryan Raths By Mike Gertzman

PHOENIX -- A former elementary school teacher accused of sexually assaulting women he met online has pleaded not guilty.

Ryan Raths, 40, entered his plea Wednesday morning. His next court date is an initial pretrial conference on Jan. 16.

Raths was charged with six counts of sexual assault. The cases date back to 2004, according to court documents.

Glendale police said Raths is accused of sexually assaulting a woman in September 2004 in an apartment where she went to meet him to get a copy of a record produced by his band.

He's also accused of assaulting a 29-year-old woman at his apartment in October 2007. She had just moved to Arizona from California. The two met on myspace.com.

He was arrested at his Glendale home on Nov. 21.

Raths is a former fourth-grade teacher at Roadrunner Elementary School in the Washington Elementary School District.

The police report reveals Raths also worked in the Alhambra School District but was recommended to be terminated based on performance and "acts of anger towards other employees," according to documents.