Former teacher pleads not guilty on sex charges

SPOKANE, Wash. - In a brief appearance Wednesday morning, former Shadle Park High School teacher Ryan Murphy pleaded not guilty to a first degree sexual misconduct charge in Spokane Superior Court.

As his alleged victim's parents looked on he entered his not guilty plea.

Judge Maryann Moreno told Murphy he would have to book himself into the Spokane County Jail by March 27. He can remain free on his own recognizance but the conditions of his release include no contact with minors on social media and no sexual contact with minors.

A court order also bars Murphy from contacting the alleged victim, who is now 19 and attending college out of the Spokane area.

According to detectives, Murphy used his position as a coach and English instructor to groom one of his female 16-year-old students for his sexual advances.

The Spokane School District suspended Murphy last spring after the teen complained Murphy had sent her hundreds of inappropriate text messages. Following a district investigation into his behavior he resigned from the district.

Teacher charged

A subsequent police investigation found that Murphy had taken the girl out on romantic dates and eventually began having sex with the alleged victim inside Murphy's home. He also asked a school counselor to transfer the student to his class when she was scheduled to take English from a different instructor.

Since KXLY first reported Monday that Murphy had been charged, several other former students have come forward and told police he had inappropriate relationships with them as well.

"Ryan Murphy was a teacher at Shadle for a long period of time and our concern is that there may be some other victims out there, or people who had interaction with him they felt was inappropriate, and we'd like them to report that to police so we can make contact them," Spokane Police Lieutenant Mark Griffiths said.

Deputy prosecutor Patrick Johnson says the police department's ongoing investigation could result in additional charges against Murphy.

Murphy still has his teaching credentials; they would be revoked if he's convicted.