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Tennessee teacher who fled with student for sex seeks lesser sentence

NASHVILLE, Tenn. — A Tennessee teacher who was on the run for weeks with a 15-year-old student is appealing his 20-year prison sentence.

An attorney for Tad Cummins filed a notice of appeal on Wednesday, a week after Cummins was sentenced in federal court in Nashville for transporting a minor across state lines for sex and obstructing justice.

The girl’s disappearance in March 2017 set off a national manhunt that ended when she was recovered in California more than five weeks later.

Prosecutors had asked for a 30-year sentence. The 52-year-old Cummins argued that was the equivalent of life in prison. He asked for the minimum sentence of 10 years.

In splitting the difference, the judge said Cummins committed a “pretty despicable crime” but also had no criminal record and was unlikely to reoffend.

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