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St. James teacher sentenced to 7 years in prison

A former St. James Middle School teacher has been sentenced to seven years in prison after he pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a minor, according to court records.

Norbert Richard Ryan IV, 33, pleaded guilty Wednesday to second-degree criminal sexual conduct with a minor younger than 16, according to records.

Circuit Court Judge Benjamin Culbertson sentenced Ryan to seven years in prison, and ordered him pay court costs and be placed on the central registry of child abuse and neglect.

He was given credit for the time he's served since his arrest in December. The charge stemmed from an Oct. 7 incident involving one of his 13-year-old students.

Ryan, an eighth-grade social studies teacher at the school, was arrested after the girl's father called police. It appeared the relationship between the teen and Ryan was mutual, according to police.

"The allegations were corroborated by both the victim and the suspect," said Horry County Police Sgt. Robert Kegler following Ryan's arrest.

The girl told Horry County Police that she had sex with Ryan while at his home in Myrtle Beach on Oct. 7 and Oct. 30, according to the warrant.

Ryan resigned from his teaching position in December, after being placed on administrative leave. He'd been with the district for two to three years.

Ryan came to Horry County schools from Michigan and had no prior criminal record, according to a records check with the State Law Enforcement Division.