Former teacher sentenced for sexual abuse

ROCHESTER, Minn. – A former teacher in Southern Minnesota has been sentenced after being convicted of sexual abuse.

Francis Skinness, 68, was sentenced to 144 months in prison.

Skinness was convicted of three felony counts of sexual abuse in Olmsted County district court.

Authorities say the abuse happened in a storage room at Bonner Elementary School in Stewartville during the 2005-2006 school year. On Monday morning during sentencing, the victim appeared in court and told the filled room why she will be considered a victim no more. “Victim impact statements are very important part of any sentencing. In this case, the victim showed great courage in standing up again and letting her voice be heard,” Attorney Eric Woodford said.

This isn’t the first run-in with the law for Skinness.

He was convicted in 2011 of sexually abusing another girl, who testified in this trial.

Skinness must serve 96 months of this sentence or two-thirds of it.

He does have the chance to appeal.

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