A judge on Wednesday rejected the plea deal for a Northwest Indiana teacher accused of sexting naked photos to students, scoring a major victory for the students' families.
"The basic wrongness of a teacher doing this to young students," Judge Mary Harper said, "there is no excuse."
The original deal would have required Bryan Tyman, 45, a former teacher at Portage's William Fegely Middle School, to a year of home confinement and five years of probation for sending inappropriate texts and pictures to three underage female students.
Tyman pleaded guilty in September to two counts of soliciting sex with a child and admitted to sending sexually explicit text messages with pictures to students on at least two occasions.
Harper let Tyman enter his guilty plea Wednesday and even read a statement apologizing to his victims before she surprised the courtroom by saying she was not prepared to accept the plea agreement.
The turning point may have been the candid victim impact statements of the parents of three of the victims. Roy Peeler described how his daughter has suffered since news of the sexting scandal became public.
"My daughter is carrying around a tremendous amount of guilt," Peeler told the judge. "She came to me saying it was all her fault."
Other parents demanded that Tyman serve jail time. Judge Harper made it clear she wasn't happy with the original deal.
"Lines weren't muddied, they were crossed by criminal conduct," she said.
She ordered both sides back to court November 27.