Quantcast

Plea deal offered in sex abuse case involving teacher, 2 students

Published: Friday, Aug. 28 2015 2:13 p.m. MDT

Broch DeGraff, 27, is charged with forcible sodomy and nine counts of forcible sexual abuse involving two students at Liahona Preparatory Academy in Pleasant Grove, where he was a coach and teacher. (, Utah County Jail) Broch DeGraff, 27, is charged with forcible sodomy and nine counts of forcible sexual abuse involving two students at Liahona Preparatory Academy in Pleasant Grove, where he was a coach and teacher. (, Utah County Jail)

PROVO — A plea deal is in the works for a former private school instructor and coach accused of having sexual relationships with two female students.

With his alleged victims looking on from the gallery, Broch DeGraff waived his right to a preliminary hearing Monday in 4th District Court as part of the negotiations between prosecutors and defense attorneys.

DeGraff, 27, was charged in September with forcible sodomy, a first-degree felony, and nine counts of forcible sexual abuse, a second-degree felony.

"We have extended an offer," deputy Utah County attorney David Sturgill said, though he declined to provide any details about the deal. "(DeGraff) waived his preliminary hearing to keep that offer alive."

DeGraff was an instructor and soccer coach at Liahona Preparatory Academy, a Pleasant Grove private school owned by his father, Brent DeGraff. Curriculum at the school for students in kindergarten through 12th grade is based on values of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.

Charges allege that Broch DeGraff fondled and sexually abused the two 16-year-old girls during separate relationships that police said carried on, one after the other, between October 2011 and June 2012.

Some of the sexual acts occurred at Liahona Preparatory Academy and property adjacent to the school, while others took place at DeGraff's home in Pleasant Grove, according to a police affidavit.

DeGraff did not speak during his brief appearance before Judge Fred Howard. An arraignment was scheduled for Jan. 8.

DeGraff was arrested Sept. 20. Brent DeGraff posted his son's $50,000 bail on Nov. 15.

Defense attorneys attempted to have Monday's scheduled preliminary hearing continued to allow Broch DeGraff to undergo a psycho-sexual evaluation, according to motion filed last month.

Prosecutors requested that the court deny the motion, saying "the results of a psycho-sexual evaluation will have no bearing on whether the court binds this case over for trial," according to court documents.

"Further, the state spoke to both victims in this case, and neither is interested in the results of a psycho-sexual evaluation, nor do they want to delay the preliminary hearing," Sturgill wrote in his response.

Broch DeGraff was fired by Liahona Preparatory Academy in late July or early August when the allegations of sexual abuse surfaced, according to a spokeswoman for the school.

The alleged abuse was reported to school administrators after one of the girl's parents learned of the sexual relationship, police said.

E-mail: jpage@desnews.com

Copyright 2015, Deseret News Publishing Company