Jury selection was to begin this week in the case of Mark Citron, the former athletic director for the Jenkintown School District who was accused in 2012 of having a relationship with a 17-year-old female student. But instead of facing a jury of his peers, Citron has elected to plead guilty to corruption of a minor and endangering the welfare of a minor.
Prosecutors say that Citron, now 45, had a six-month relationship with the girl in 2010 when she was a senior and he was athletic director at Jenkintown High School. Citron was arrested in 2012 after an anonymous tip was called in to the state’s Childline.
The Montgomery County District Attorney's office says that Citron would routinely have sexual contact with the girl in his office, and that at least one incident of sexual intercourse occurred. Investigators also found nearly 1,000 text messages between Citron and the girl.
Citron, who lives on the 1800 block of Danforth Street in Northeast Philadelphia, was originally charged with a felony, which the prosecutor reduced to a misdemeanor charge. Citron is is currently free on $250,000 bail. Sentencing guidelines call for as much as 18 months in jail.
Meanwhile, the victim is pursuing Citron and the school district in federal court for civil damages. That suit, originally filed in November 2012, was stayed pending the outcome of the criminal case.
She filed the case as an adult, revealing her identity as Alyssa Viney of Jenkintown. According to Viney's suit, her relationship with Citron included "sex, oral sex, sexual assault, sexual harassment and inappropriate sexual touching," and she says that these acts occurred in "his office and other rooms such as a school closet."
The suit maintains that the school district should have known what was going on behind closed doors between a male school official and a minor female student, on an almost daily basis.
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