A former math teacher at Eastern Guilford High School, who was arrested Friday in Mebane and charged with having sex with a student, was in Orange County District court Monday.
Dustin Graham Branch, 32, of 522 Ashbury Square in Mebane is charged with one count of sex offense with a student and it’s possible he could face additional charges, according to police.
He’s also charged with one count of criminal use of trademark. Police say that’s unrelated to the sex case and stems from 228 pirated movies they found while searching his apartment.
The Guilford County Sheriff’s Office alerted the Mebane Police Department on Friday, May 29 that an alleged incident had occurred between an 18-year-old student, who was 17 at the time of the alleged incident, and Branch, also was a track coach at the high school.
Several parents and students at Eastern Guilford contacted the school after becoming aware of a sexual relationship between Branch and a student on the track team.
Branch denied any involvement but school leaders found email correspondence between him and the student described as “beneficial” to the case against him.
The student told investigators, according to warrants, that Branch brought her to his apartment between April 1 and May 27 where they watched movies and had sex.
Among the items police seized at the apartment were two video cameras, condoms, rope, a flash drive and a prom night photo key ring
Branch told WNCN just before court, “I don’t have anything to say, sir.” But his attorney did speak to WNCN.
“Mr. Branch has faith in the justice system and we’re going to handle this matter in the courts,” said attorney Robert Jennings. “Other than that, at this time, we have no comment.”
However, the Guilford County Schools did release a statement Monday. It reads, “We are deeply disappointed by this situation and we are very concerned for everyone involved, particularly the victim and the victim’s family. We have a great team of educators and staff at Eastern High, and they are doing everything they can to support our students and parents during this difficult time.”
Branch was placed in Orange County Jail under a $5,000 bond, which he posted and was released.
Anyone with information regarding this crime and/or similar incidents such as these involving Dustin Graham Branch, is asked to contact the Mebane Police Department at (919)563-9031 or Alamance County Crime Stoppers at (336)229-7100.