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Ex-Frenchtown HS teacher accused of sending inappropriate messages to a student

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MISSOULA -

A former Frenchtown High School teacher has been charged with endangering the welfare of children, a misdemeanor. 

The Missoula County Sheriff's Office was made aware in April 2015 that Michael Kent Botsford was communicating with a 15 year-old student frequently, with some messages being sexual in nature. 

Prosecutors say Botsford attempted to gauge her comfort level with intimate activity with him, and sent about 14,000 messages to her. 

During an interview with First Step, the girl said the two never discussed sex directly, but the two had some light physical contact in his classroom at times. 

Botsford later told investigators he had no sexual thoughts or intentions about the girl, but was in love with her and wanted to pursue a relationship after she graduated high school. 

Prosecutors say Botsford has a history of inappropriate relations with students and was fired from another high school for similar conduct. 

Botsford is set to appear in Missoula Justice Court on Feb. 18.

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