Russell Middle School teacher acquitted of sexual abuse charge

Sexual abuse charges against a Russell County Middle School teacher were dismissed this morning after the prosecution concluded presentation of evidence to a Russell Circuit Court jury.

Judge Albert Johnson ordered a directed verdict for acquittal in the case against Sebastian Moore. who was indicted in August on a charge of first-degree sexual abuse alleging he inappropriately touched a 17-year-old special education student.

Prosecutors alleged Moore touched the girl in April 2006 on school property. After hearing the evidence, Johnson ordered the directed verdict and dismissed the jury.

"I'm saying this — had the entire situation been properly handled from the very beginning, I have a very serious doubt that this man would have ever been indicted," the judge said.

A visibly elated Moore thanked God for the verdict. "I am just blessed and highly favored," he said. "Words can't express how I feel right now."

Read more about this case later today online and in print editions of Thursday's Ledger-Enquirer.