FAIRBANKS -- A former University of Alaska Fairbanks researcher who was facing a sex abuse charge in Utah involving a teenage boy from Alaska has pleaded guilty to a charge of lewdness involving a child.
The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reported Jeffrey Werner was sentenced to two months in jail after his recent plea.
The 47-year-old Werner was charged last year in Garfield County, Utah, one of the sites he took teenagers on trips with the FFA, the organization formerly known as Future Farmers of America.
Werner was Alaska state adviser for the organization.
Under Werner's plea agreement, the original charge of felony forcible sexual abuse was changed to the misdemeanor lewdness charge.
Reached by phone at his Fairbanks home Sunday, Werner declined to comment to The Associated Press.
According to court information, Werner has paid $10,000 restitution to the victim and a $1,000 fine. He is to report to a county jail in Garfield County by mid-September to serve one month of his term and then return in January to serve the other month.
Werner led several high school groups on overnight field trips between 2006 and 2009.
Last year, a young man told Alaska State Troopers that while he was in high school he spent about 60 nights on FFA trips with Werner, including a visit to Bryce Canyon National Park in Utah that led to the criminal charge.
The man told authorities Werner made a pattern of sharing a hotel room with him and touching him inappropriately.
During the investigation, the man wore a secret recorder and contacted Werner, who acknowledged the abuse and apologized for it.