DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — A former Johnston teacher accused of groping and making sexual comments to an anatomy class student has been given two years of probation.

Court records say 34-year-old Dustin Mead entered an Alford plea to a harassment charge in a plea deal. He originally pleaded not guilty to sexual abuse and sexual abuse by a school employee. The Alford plea means Mead acknowledges there's enough evidence for a jury to reach a guilty verdict, but he says he didn't commit the acts alleged.

Mead resigned from his teaching job at Johnston schools in April 2017 after a female student alleged he gave her grades she didn't earn, made sexual comments and groped her during the 2015-2016 school year.

Mead's lawyer, Guy Cook, told The Des Moines Register that Mead "maintains his innocence because he is innocent."