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Bill to make teacher-student dating a felony rejected by California lawmakers

James Hooker, 41, was arrested on Friday, April 6, 2012, on suspicion of sexually abusing a student at Davis High School in Modesto in 1998.

April 18, 2012 12:00:00 AM PDT
California lawmakers have rejected a bill that would have made it a felony for teachers to date their students even if they're over 18 years old.

The bill was inspired by the headline-grabbing case of 41-year-old Modesto teacher James Hooker, who left his wife and kids to move in with his 18-year-old student, Jordan Powers.

An Assembly committee voted down the bill Tuesday by a vote of 3-0.

The bill's author accused committee members of standing with predators. The bill was opposed by the state teachers union and the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU).