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Man guilty in battery case

A former program director at a Christian boarding school for troubled teens in Caroline County has been convicted of sexual battery.

Nathaniel Daniel, who has since been removed as a program director at the Abundant Life Academy, entered an Alford plea to the misdemeanor charge as part of a plea agreement in Caroline Juvenile and Domestic Relations Court Tuesday.

An Alford plea means that while he does not admit guilt, he acknowledges that there is enough evidence for a conviction.

He was given a suspended 12-month sentence, must have a sex offender evaluation and be under supervised probation.

A tip to police about an assault that occurred in June led to that charge. No other details were released in that case.

Abundant Life Academy is a therapeutic boarding school for troubled teens.

The school’s mission is to “equip students and families to live a life of love, acceptance and forgiveness through modeling and training of biblical principles, bridging the gap between parents and children,” according to its application when it filed to set up shop in the county.

It is in the location of the former Easter Seals and Remuda Ranch building off Passing Road near Sparta.

This is not the first school employee to face criminal charges in recent months.

Jovany Rivera, 21, Timothy Jordan, 26, Liam Galligan, 44, and 49-year-old William Honea are each charged with assault and battery and assault by mob. The charges are misdemeanors. They are accused of committing a continuous assault on a student at Abundant Life.

None of them still works at the school.

An Oct. 9 trial has been set for the four in circuit court.

Portsia Smith: 540/374-5419


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