Former Multnomah County substitute teacher convicted of sexual abuse

Arnold Buckendahl booking photo courtesy Multnomah County Sheriff's Office

PORTLAND, Ore. – A Multnomah County jury convicted a former substitute teacher of first-degree sexual abuse Friday, after a nine-day trial.

At the trial, the state presented evidence showing that in 2008, 54-year-old Dale Arnold Buckendahl was a substitute teacher for a third-grade class at Alder Elementary School in Fairview.

Three years later, in 2011, the victim, who was then in sixth grade, told a school counselor that in 2008 a substitute teacher had put his hands up her skirt and touched her in a sexual manner.

The jury found that Buckendahl had unlawfully and knowingly subjected the victim to sexual contact by touching her leg.

Evidence presented at the trial showed the incident occurred while the girl was seated at a table inside a classroom with other students during a reading group.

"[The victim] endured an emotional struggle after this [incident] and it was long-lasting," Multnomah County Senior Deputy District Attorney Amity Girt said during closing arguments.

Buckendahl is set to be sentenced on Jan. 2 at 2 p.m. During the trial, he was acquitted of one count of first-degree sexual abuse.

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