Chess Teacher Sentenced In Child Sex Case

Robert Snyder Sentenced To 2 Years In County Jail

A chess teacher who pleaded guilty to sexually assaulting a child was sentenced Wednesday to two years in County Jail with 10 years to life of probation, the Larimer County District Attorney's office said.

Robert Snyder pleaded guilty to one count each of sexual assault on a child and unlawful sexual contact after being accused in 2005 of sexually assaulting three of his students.

Snyder faced four counts of sexual assault on a child by a person in a position of trust and two counts of sexual assault on a child pattern of abuse. The abuses were alleged to have happened at his home in late 2002 and the summer of 2005.

The district attorney's office said that for the duration of his probation Snyder will be on a sexual intensive probation, which is meant to make sure he is always monitored and has no contact with children.

Officials said once he is out of jail, he must register as a sex offender and must submit to genetic counseling. The DA's office said he must also write a letter of apology to the victim.

Snyder owned the Fort Collins-based Chess For Juniors that operated out of his home.

The recent charges weren't the first to surface regarding Snyder who moved to Colorado from California in 2000.

In 1983, he was found not guilty on four counts of sexual assault a California student. A judge dismissed the fifth count against him, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The charges were filed after the father of one of his students found Snyder and his son in the boy's room with a chair wedged against the shut door, the Times reported.

The not guilty verdicts came after a four-week trial and two hours of deliberation by the jury.

Snyder is the author of several chess books published by Random House, which includes the bestseller "Chess For Juniors," and has written articles for "Chess Life" and "School Mates" magazines, according to his Web site. The Web site also said that Snyder taught the game to students such as actor Will Smith, and the son of actor Nicholas Cage.

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