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updated: 8/26/2014 11:19 AM

Former Springfield teacher convicted of sex abuse

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Associated Press

SPRINGFIELD -- A former Springfield teacher has been convicted of sexually abusing a young boy more than a decade ago.

The (Springfield) State Journal-Register reports that 59-year-old Steven Battles was sentenced to seven years in prison in Sangamon Circuit Court Monday.

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Battles pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated criminal sexual abuse for fondling a boy between 1999 and 2002. Prosecutors say the abuse began when the boy was 10.

Officials say Battles had a history of questionable behavior during his 17-year career with District 186. He was accused of letting students sit on his lap, giving back rubs and telephoning male students. He was fired in 2009.

Sangamon County State's Attorney John Milhiser says Battles is being held in county jail until his processing by the Illinois Department of Corrections.

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