A former Nampa High Spanish teacher was granted withheld judgement in a 1990 case where he had inappropriate sexual contact with a victim, according to court documents.
Keith Odell Peterson, 70, was arrested Monday on new charges of sexual battery and lewd conduct with a minor following a Nampa Police investigation in April. A probable cause affidavit filed in April states Peterson was a Spanish teacher at Nampa High School about 25 years ago “and had ‘masturbated’ another student and was investigated for that.”
Court records reveal that on Sept. 17, 1991, Peterson was charged with battery for touching a victim’s penis. The criminal complaint from 1991 did not specify the age of the victim or exactly what happened.
Peterson, who pleaded guilty to the ‘90s charge, was given withheld judgment. He was sentenced to 180 days suspended jail time and two years of probation. Withheld judgment means that if a defendant successfully completes their sentence, the conviction will not go on their record. Because Peterson “successfully completed his probation and has fully complied with all terms and provisions” his battery charge was dismissed in 1998, according to court documents.
It’s not clear if the investigation referenced in the probable cause affidavit is the same incident as the 1991 criminal case.
Peterson was arrested April 29 on two new felony charges similar to the same crime as over 20 years ago — touching a victim’s penis.
Nampa police began investigating the new accusations April 5. The boy claims Peterson inappropriately touched him on multiple occasions for a year-and-a-half.
Peterson is currently being held in the Canyon County jail on a $500,000 bond.
Due to the access Peterson has to children as a former teacher, Nampa Police are concerned there are more victims. If so, contact Nampa Police at 208-465-2257.