Rape charge spoils groom's wedding plans
OSSINING, N.Y. — An upstate New York math teacher was supposed to be getting married on Friday — but instead was charged with raping a 16-year-old female student.
The Journal News reports that Ossining High School teacher John Azabache was arrested when the girl contacted police. She said they had sexual relations twice between March and July, not on school property. It's not clear whether she was his student.
The attorney for the 31-year-old teacher says his client was not charged with any forcible compulsion. He says the alleged incident involves a minor who is “just under 17.”
Azabache pleaded not guilty to third-degree rape and posted $50,000 bail.
Defense lawyer Tony Castro said Azabache's wedding to Amanda Rae DeLuccia of White Plains, originally scheduled for Friday, was canceled some time ago. He would not say whether the cancellation was related to the charges.
Ossining School District Superintendent Raymond Sanchez said officials were “disturbed and appalled” by the charges. Counseling is being offered to students next week.
Sanchez said Azabache was hired in 2008 and had no prior criminal record. He has been “administratively reassigned” and barred from school grounds, the superintendent said.
Many guests were told Thursday night that the wedding was off.
“It all just came out at the last minute,” said the bride's 92-year-old grandmother, Josephine DeLuccia. “He always seemed like a nice guy. I don't know what happened. I hope they send him to jail forever.”
She spoke with her granddaughter Friday morning and said she was told, “Nanny, don't worry about me. I'm strong; I'll survive.” Amanda DeLuccia told her that she was going to hang out with friends and see a movie on what would have been her wedding night.