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TEACHER SENTENCED FOR SODOMY JUDGE ORDERS PRISON TERM IN SEXUAL ABUSE OF BOY

Lonie Sims, a suspended Buffalo public school teacher and Boy Scout leader, was sentenced Wednesday to two to six years in prison for repeatedly sodomizing a boy in a school coatroom.

Acting State Supreme Court Justice Mark H. Dadd imposed the prison term on Sims, 65, of 52 Warwick St., for three counts of sodomy, two counts of sex abuse and a single count of endangering the welfare of a minor.

Dadd did not comment on the charges, lodged for crimes committed in 1984 and 1985.

As the victim, now 14, left the courtroom, he told prosecutors he fears that Sims, a learning-disabilities teacher for 18 years, will "come after me" when he is released from custody.

The boy testified during Sims' non-jury trial in December that Sims periodically ordered him into a coatroom at School 68 at 24 Westminster St. and molested him during the 1984-85 school year and early in the next school year.

The boy testified that Sims would order him into the coatroom for punishment and would then sodomize him.

Jon Coughlan, chief of the Erie County district attorney's Sex Crimes Bureau and chief prosecutor in the case, declined to comment on the pupil's concerns. Law enforcement sources said they doubt the boy will face any problems from the defendant.

Sims, who was convicted Dec. 15 by Dadd and could have received a prison term of up to 50 years, protested his innocence. Dadd is a Wyoming County judge on temporary assignment.

"I know in my heart that I'm not guilty," Sims said. Free on bail until Wednesday, Sims was taken from court in handcuffs.

Paul V. Hurley, Sims' attorney, told the judge Sims was a "teacher of some repute" and was active in church work as well as with the Boy Scouts and never was the subject of sex complaints before the boy's accusations.

Even if Sims didn't face dismissal from his teaching post because of the conviction, he had no intention of returning to the city school system because of the boy's "false accusations," Hurley said.

Sims, who is married, taught in Buffalo schools from 1971 to 1976. He then taught at Baker Hall in Lackawanna until 1981 before rejoining the city school system.

Since the boy made the sex complaints to another adult in the spring of 1988, Sims has been on paid suspension.

Sims' attorney said the conviction will be appealed.

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