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Modesto student moves back in with teacher arrested on sex charge

April 18, 2012 |  8:13 am

An 18-year-old Modesto student has moved back in with her 41-year-old former teacher, media in the Central Valley city are reporting.

The news that Jordan Powers and James Hooker are together again came Tuesday, the same day legislation inspired by their relationship was rejected in the state Legislature.

Neighbors at Hooker's studio apartment in Modesto reported seeing the couple together last weekend, the Modesto Bee reported. Powers answered the knock of a Sacramento TV reporter on Tuesday and confirmed that they were reunited.

Powers' mother, Tammie Powers, told the Modesto Bee her daughter left the Ohio home where she was staying several days ago.

A man whose apartment sits across from Hooker's said he saw the couple together Tuesday, the Bee reported.

"I'm highly shocked she's back here," he told the Bee. "I thought her mom would talk some sense into her. But it shows how much he is in her head now."

The teen's about-face came about a week after she left the state following Hooker's April 6 arrest by Modesto police on a sex charge involving a different student 14 years ago. Powers called her mother after officers left, and Tammie Powers helped her pack her bags.

"She requested the distance. She asked to fly to Ohio. He's just not going to let her go," Tammie Powers told the Bee on Tuesday.

Hooker remains out on bail but will return to court May 15 to face a charge of oral copulation with a 17-year-old in 1998. That girl attended a different Modesto high school and said she met him at a business club event he attended as a Davis High advisor.

The pair gained notoriety after Hooker left his wife and three daughters, quit his teaching job and moved Powers into his apartment in February. Both insisted they were not physically involved until months after she turned 18 in September.

Police are investigating thousands of text messages sent between the two, including some that pre-date her birthday. After Jordan left the state April 6, Tammie Powers said Hooker called the teen "relentlessly," and she acknowledged that her daughter began talking with him daily.

Jordan Powers has cut off all contact with her relatives, Tammie Powers told the Bee.

News of the couple's reunion came the same day that a bill proposing to outlaw such teacher-student relationships was killed in the Assembly Public Safety Committee. Assembly Bill 1861 by Assemblywoman Kristin Olsen (R-Modesto) would have made it a felony for a teacher to have a romantic relationship with a student at the same school, regardless of the student's age.


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