Fairfax County Public Schools says it will pay South Lakes High School physical education teacher Sean Langian more than $72,000 for legal fees incurred when a student at his former school in Centreville falsely accused him of molesting her, The Washington Post reported.
The $72,838 is only a portion of the estimated $125,000 Lanigan spent defending himself against two felony charges in 2010. The Post reports that State law allows a county or state employee who is cleared of criminal charges to recover legal fees and expenses but not other costs, which for Lanigan were about $18,000.
Lanigan, 45, first asked for $107,838 for his fees and expenses in July 2010, two months after his acquittal in Fairfax County Circuit Court.
The school board later voted to offer Lanigan $60,000. Lanigan then sued for the entire amount.
The school board agreed in a closed session Thursday to pay $72,838, the Post reported.
A sixth grader at Centre Ridge Elementary in Centreville accused Lanigan in January 2010. Lanigan, who is the boys soccer coach at Herndon High School, was charged with abduction and aggravated sexual battery of a child under 13.
A jury acquitted him on both charges and the girl also admitted she fabricated the story.
Lanigan was transferred from Centre Ridge to South Lakes prior to the 2010-11 school year.