Reality TV show dance teacher pleads guilty to raping 16-year-old boy and exposing him to HIV
John Conner III pleaded guilty to felony charges of criminal exposure to HIV, statutory rape by an authority figure, and solicitation of a minor.
MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE: A Tennessee dance teacher who had appeared on a reality TV show has pleaded guilty to raping a teenage boy and exposing him to HIV.
John Conner III was 26-years-old when he first met the victim, a 16-year-old boy, on social media in 2015, according to a press release by Shelby County District Attorney General Amy Weirich. Conner had unprotected sex with the teen several times in his car, and soon after that, the 16-year-old joined the teacher's dance team, 'The Infamous Dancerettes.'
PEOPLE reported that Conner was once featured on Lifetime's reality TV dance show 'Bring It,' which showcased competitive dance teams in the mid-South, including his aforementioned Memphis team.
He appeared on the show in 2014 during season 1 as the coach of the 'Dynamic Diamond Dollz,' and then again on season 2 as the coach of 'The Infamous Dancerettes.' He is currently not listed on the cast list for the current season.
After the victim joined the team, their relationship continued, with the pair exchanging nude photos and text messages about their sexual activity, prosecutors said. Throughout this time, he never told the teen that he had tested positive for HIV in 2012.
The crime came to light in August 2016 when the victim told his parents about his sexual encounters with Conner and said he thought he should be tested for the virus after hearing that the dance teacher had it. His worst fears were confirmed, and he tested positive.
Conner was scheduled to go on trial this week but instead pleaded guilty to felony charges of criminal exposure to HIV, statutory rape by an authority figure, and solicitation of a minor. He is scheduled to be sentenced on December 20 by Criminal Court Judge Chris Craft.
The 30-year-old also has two similar cases pending with two other victims, aged 17 and 24.