Santa Clara Jail
Curtis William Payne

SALT LAKE CITY — A longtime teacher at Sunset Elementary School in St. George already charged with sexually assaulting a student was charged Wednesday with an additional 12 counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child in four separate cases.

The cases were filed in 5th District Court against Curtis William Payne, 59, of Santa Clara.

On Jan. 31, Payne was charged with three counts of aggravated sexual abuse of a child, a first-degree felony, for allegedly sexually assaulting a student while in the classroom during the 1990s, according to court records.

A woman, who was a student in his fourth-grade class, said Payne would have her sit on his lap behind his desk and inappropriately touch her, the charges state.

After those charges were filed, at least four other women contacted St. George police claiming they were abused by Payne, according to charges filed in the new cases. Three of the alleged victims are also former students, the charges state.

One woman, who was in Payne's fourth-grade class during the 2000-01 school year, said during a school dance Payne danced with her and inappropriately touched her at least 10 times, the charges state.

Another woman told police that Payne would inappropriately touch her during movies when she was in his fourth-grade class during the 1999-2000 school year, charging documents state.

"She remembers this occurring approximately 8 to 10 times during the course of the school year," the charges state.

A third girl said Payne also inappropriately touched her during her fourth- and fifth-grade years at Sunset Elementary, the charges state. In addition, Payne touched the girl in front of her residence in St. George, according to court documents.

Another woman told police that her family were longtime friends of Payne and they would visit each summer. The woman claimed over the course of three summers, between the ages of 10 to 12, Payne would inappropriately touch her while he baby-sat her and they watched movies in his basement, according to court documents.

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"The female says she believes there were over 20 separate incidents of abuse over the three summers in question," court records state.

Payne taught at Sunset Elementary from 1986 until just recently, according to the Washington County School District. This was his 32nd year of teaching in the district. Payne was a choir teacher at Sunrise Ridge Intermediate School at the time of his initial arrest. He was immediately placed on administrative leave by the district.

Payne was scheduled to make an initial court appearance on all of his new charges on Thursday.