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November 28, 2014

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Former Foothill H.S. teacher gets probation for inappropriate relationship with teen

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L.E. Baskow

Former Foothill High School teacher Amanda Brennan, who pleaded guilty to romancing a teenager, talks with her lawyer William Terry at her sentencing hearing Tuesday, March 18, 2014.

Updated Tuesday, March 18, 2014 | 5:26 p.m.

Amanda Brennan Sentencing

Former Foothill High School teacher Amanda Brennan, who pleaded guilty to romancing a teenager, listens to District Court Judge James A. Brennan during her sentencing hearing Tuesday, March 18, 2014. Launch slideshow »

A former high school English teacher was sentenced Tuesday in Las Vegas to five years of probation for an inappropriate relationship with a teenage student almost a year ago.

Amanda Nicole Brennan, 25, has a chance to reduce her felony conviction to a misdemeanor if she stays out of trouble. But she also faces one to four years in prison if she slips and violates the sentence imposed after her Oct. 31 guilty plea to felony charge of luring a child with intent to engage in sexual conduct.

She also has to register as a sex offender.

"I'm sorry for the incident," Brennan said softly as she stood with her defense lawyer, William Terry, before Senior Clark County District Court Judge James Brennan. The judge and the defendant are not related.

Terry called his client "naive" and said she knew she could never teach again.

Terry said Brennan has found another job but wouldn't specify outside court what it was.

Brennan and her mother declined comment.

Police had said the former Foothill High School teacher told investigators she knew it was wrong to date the boy, who was 15 years old at the time, but she did it anyway.

The boy's parents reported that Brennan picked up the teen against their wishes and returned him home past curfew. The teen’s mother learned Brennan’s name and age from the security guard at their gated Henderson community, where Brennan had come to pick up the boy.

The teen told police that he and Brennan loved each other and had kissed twice, but only cuddled in the back of her car the night he went out without his parents' permission.

Officials also found about 1,000 text messages between Brennan and the boy in a nine-day period before Brennan's arrest last May 10.

Brennan's sentencing came a week after a 22-year-old former Las Vegas substitute teacher was arrested on kidnapping, child sex and lewdness charges in a separate case involving what authorities allege was a sexual relationship with a 15-year-old student.

Tanikka Queen remained jailed Tuesday on $100,000 bail pending a March 31 preliminary hearing on felony kidnapping, child sexual assault and lewdness charges.

Police reported recovering thousands of cellphone text messages between Queen and the eighth-grader, records of more than 100 voice calls and dozens of photographs.

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