The four people accused of sexually abusing a child said they were not guilty. They appeared in the Del Norte Superior Court on Thursday, Jan. 30. Katlin Nole, 43, Kathleen Fuson, 60, and Edward Steele, 48, pleaded not guilty. Jody Nole, 49, had previously pleaded not guilty.

 They return to court on Feb. 27 at 10 a.m. for a preliminary hearing.  

 Two of the defendants, Katlin Nole and Fuson, held positions within the Del Norte County Unified School District (DNUSD) — Fuson, a second-grade teacher, and Katlin Nole, a special education instructional assistant.  

 The alleged crimes did not involve students and did not occur on school property, according to DNUSD Superintendent Jeff Harris.  

Katlin Nole and Fuson were charged with suspicion of continuous sexual abuse of a child. Nole faces an additional charge of sexual intercourse with a child 10 years old or younger.

Steele was arrested Thursday, Jan. 23 when authorities found him sleeping in a vehicle on Kings Valley Road. He was charged with suspicion of aggravated sexual assault of a minor and kidnapping to commit sexual assault.  

 Jody Nole has been incarcerated since June 2019 and is currently being held in the Pelican Bay State Prison. He was charged with suspicion of sexual intercourse or sodomy with a child 10 years old or younger, continuous sexual abuse of a child and aggravated sexual assault of a child.

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