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Tuesday, October 4th, 2011 -- 2:18 PM

A high school teacher has been charged with incest and sexually assaulting a family member at least a half dozen times over the last year. During an initial appearance Monday morning, Wood County Judge Greg Potter found probable cause to continue the case against Paul Peterson. The 39-year-old Peterson will remain jailed on a $250,000 cash bond. As a condition of his bond, he cannot have any contact with girls younger than 18. Peterson is charged with repeated sexual assault of the same child, incest and exposing genitals. The most serious charges carry a maximum 40-year sentence.

Peterson told police that he started touching the victim about three weeks after the victim?s mother died last November. He began having sexual intercourse with the victim earlier this year. He also admitted performing anal and oral sex each once. Peterson said the sexual encounters happened about a half dozen times but could be as many as 10 times, according to a criminal complaint.

The victim told police that the two had sex at least once a week in his bedroom. The last sexual encountered happened September 18 or 19, two days before police interviewed Peterson and the victim. Peterson, who is a technology education teacher at Stevens Point Area Senior High, has been put on administrative leave from the district.

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