116 3rd St SE
Cedar Rapids, Iowa 52401
An attorney for a former Waterloo teacher accused of pouring chocolate syrup on a student in 2009 argued Friday the act wasn't sexually motivated and therefore, didn't constitute the criminal charges filed.
Attorney James Metcalf said during a hearing there's no probable cause for the six misdemeanor charges against Larry Twigg, 52, because Twigg or the alleged victims were not aroused or satisfied sexually, which is an element of the crime. He asked the court to dismiss the charges.
“The young people (alleged victims) didn't express that any of the actions were sexual in nature,” Metcalf said. “None of the acts talked about involved sexual arousal on the part of Mr. Twigg or the alleged victims.”
Twigg, a former computer teacher at Waterloo West High School, is accused of paying a minor to strip down to his boxers, stand in the shower and let Twigg pour chocolate syrup on him. Another count alleges Twigg paid a minor to strip down, go outside and make snow angels at his home.
Twigg didn't make an appearance at the motion hearing.
Assistant Black Hawk County Attorney Dustin Lees said there may not be any explicit words or terms of sexual motivation used, but acts of stripping, spanking and pouring chocolate syrup on a student by a teacher suggests it.
“It's up for a jury to decide,” Lees said. “The state's intent is to show Twigg was sexually motivated.”
First Judicial Associate District Judge Nathan Callahan said he would take the arguments under advisement and make a written ruling by March 10, when Twigg has a pre-trial conference. His trial is set to start March 15.
Metcalf also submitted an exhibit to court of a psychiatric evaluation of Twigg conducted by Dr. Michael Taylor. He said the results were “surprising.” Taylor couldn't be at the hearing.
The details of the evaluation were not presented in court. The report will be sealed pending a trial.
Metcalf asked the judge to set aside the trial and send this case to a grand jury to determine if there is probable cause. He said the judge is allowed to take that course of action in light of Taylor's report.
Lees said there were no problems with the trial information. There are police reports and witnesses' statements to show probable cause.
“Asking the court to supplant Dr. Taylor's evaluation with a trial – that's not the law,” Lees said. “A dismissal is not appropriate.”
Twigg was terminated from the district last March.
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