Modesto Teacher Being Investigated For Relationship With Student

MODESTO (CBS13) – A Modesto teacher has left his wife and kids and quit his job to move in with his 18-year-old former student.

The teacher, 41-year-old James Hooker, resigned from his position at James Enochs High School last week after investigations were launched into his relationship with a student.

His girlfriend, 18-year-old Jordan Powers is a senior used to be a student in Hooker’s class.

“He’s 41, she’s 18, it’s legal but gross,” one student said.

The situation has cast a dark cloud over the school, where one of Hooker’s daughters attends and where Hooker was actively involved with students.

“I feel like he took advantage of the situation,” student Erica Goynes said, “and it’s tough for us because he wasn’t an anonymous teacher. He was involved in so many clubs and in so many aspects of our school, so it’s just very disappointing for
everybody here.”

During a short phone interview, Hooker told CBS13 he started dating powers after she turned 18 on Sept. 5.

But the teen’s mother believes the inappropriate relationship started while her daughter was underage. Students at Enochs High have heard the same thing.

“She was 14 when they first got together,” one student said. “That’s pretty disgusting, a guy like an old man would try and go with a really young girl.”

Hooker recently left his wife and children, one almost the same age as Powers, and moved into an apartment with his teen lover.

The teacher-student romance spurred controversy and Hooker resigned from his position as a high school business teacher and club leader last week after being placed on paid administrative leave while the school district and Modesto Police Department investigate the relationship.

Some parents expressed relief that Hooker is no longer on campus.

“It’s definitely wrong of him to pursue her in any way while he was still a teacher,” said parent Nicole Peacock.

Modesto police say the relationship remains under investigation. No criminal charges have been filed.

  • Caveman

    I’m not your friend. Thx.

  • their business-but don't agree

    She is 18. Unless she presses charges as an adult, for years past,the relationship is just that. A legal one.
    More people do this these days than most know. Usually it isn’t teachers,so we don’t hear about it.
    More PR for everyone! [rolleyes]

  • valleyrat

    u ruined your life for a piece of ass, what an idiot !

  • Greg Stokes

    An adult preying on a young child. She is now 18, but I’m betting he was planning this whole thing from when she was much younger. What a POS.

  • Whitey

    Don’t worry… after his wife starts getting alimony and child support, he’ll be in that apartment for a long time. What’s odd to me is she’s nice looking and him… not so much. I’d say the girl hasn’t had much of an upbringing. Then again, it’s Modesto. At least it’s a story with nobody getting killed.

    6 months from now it’ll be him, by himself, in that little apartment… writing those monthly support checks as punishment for 15 seconds of bad judgement. I don’t think they’ll ever be able to prove things happened when she was underage… but quitting his job wasn’t all that bright and he might as well move to another town because he’s mud from here on out.

  • Jenny

    You can’t help who you fall in love with!!!! So there’s a 23 year age difference… it happens more often than you think!!!! If they care about each other and love each other– and she is 18, then who’s place is it to say its wrong?????

    • Sarah

      The law. It’s the law’s place to say it’s wrong.

      • Dave

        And the law says its perfectly fine, so chew on that.

    • kay

      Well, what about his wife and children? He is a selfish person, only thinking of himself and his happiness. And what about God? He threw him out the window too?

  • Lily White

    I give it 2 months at the most—then she will be back home, in her room with her teddy bears and cell phone, laptop–enrolled in Modesto Jr. College!! He on the other hand will be trying to find a job in this economy to pay child support, college for his 3 kids, alimony, etc, etc,……being a retired teacher–giving us a bad name–he is a predator!!!

  • Elvis Presley

    Didn’t Elvis Presley start dating Priscilla when she was 14?
    I guess they didn’t have sex until she was 18…. Ya Right!
    I wonder why nobody called him a pedifier?
    I guess it’s good to be King!

  • Lucy

    From personal experience, I’d say he is a pervert and probably a sex addict as well. It is criminal behavior because of his position of dominance and power. Check other female family members and students. This is not his only victim… and he will strike again. He deserves to be in jail.

  • Lucy

    He’s a predator, and I bet this is not his first/last victim. My long time boyfriend waited until my daughter was of legal age to sexually molest her as well. They know the laws. These men need to be locked away.

  • Dani

    So shameful.

  • Sean

    Wow, so one student called him “like, an old man”, and he is 41. That is hardly “old”. Stupid student. Can’t wait till she turns 40, see how she likes being called gross.

    • Oldsean

      It’s “old” to her, as she is in high school. In fact, anyone older than her is “old.” Geez, uptight about your age much?

      • summer

        ha…That is what I thought..gosh…kind of sensative..lmao

  • Jeff

    Great comment Jenny! You are totally right.

  • Manly

    Im a sucker for a good love story.. him being married is kinda bad and if he seduced her while he was her teacher thats also not good.. other then that I see no problem.

  • letsgohuntingmountainlions

    He should be in jail the young women did not know what would happen with their teacher student relationship but this pervert knew damn well of her vulnerability aand took advantage off it.this is not a love story what-so-ever, it is a middleage man ambushing a teenager, what a creep, if he gets away with this our criminal systm is broke well it is broke so there ya are.

  • JD

    There’s a transcript error. In the video the student says “she was 14 when they first were together”. The written article says “she was 14 when they first got together”. The first way sounds like she could’ve meant she was 14 when they first met. The second way sounds like they started a physical relationship when she was 14. Kind of makes a big difference.

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