Military school administrator sentenced to 48 years for molesting student

VISTA, Calif. -- A former Carlsbad military boarding school administrator who molested a cadet over a two-year period, beginning when he was a ninth-grader in 1999, was sentenced Monday to 48 years in prison.

Jeffrey Barton, 59, was convicted in June of five felony counts of oral copulation and one felony count of sodomy. A jury acquitted him of six similar charges.

Almost two years ago, a different jury deadlocked on the charges involving the former cadet at the Army and Navy Academy, where Barton was an administrator in charge of academics.

Two other former Army and Navy students testified in the first trial that they were molested by Barton, but the defendant was acquitted on those charges.

In the retrial, Deputy District Attorney Patricia Lavermicocca told the jury that Barton repeatedly abused the former cadet and used his position of power to isolate and groom the victim with gifts and special attention.

The prosecutor said the victim -- now 32 -- felt that no one would believe that Barton molested him on campus and on out-of-town trips because the defendant was a respected school official.

Defense attorney Sherry Stone said the victim waited years before accusing Barton and has filed a lawsuit against the defendant.