A former teacher at a Schaumburg Christian school on Wednesday formally denied charges that he masturbated in front of students while teaching his math class.
Paul LaDuke, 75, pleaded not guilty to nine counts of felony exploitation of a child -- a charge that carries a maximum three-year prison term.
LaDuke was arrested in November after a student at the Schaumburg Christian School told another teacher that LaDuke unzipped his pants while sitting behind a podium, then masturbated while his students were in the classroom.
Several students later interviewed by police offered similar accounts, authorities have said.
Defense attorneys Irv Seidler and Franklin Furlett said they expect to dispute statements LaDuke purportedly made to investigators that he had engaged in similar actions for as long as 10 years prior to his arrest.
Seidler said LaDuke may have been struggling with “dementia” when he was questioned by police before his arrest.
LaDuke, who remains free on bond, was fired from his teaching job after the allegations first surfaced.