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Press Release

Former Nowata Teacher Sentenced for Abusive Sexual Contact and Enticement of a Minor

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Oklahoma

TULSA, Okla.  – A former Nowata Middle School teacher was sentenced today for Coercion and Enticement of a Minor in Indian Country and Abusive Sexual Contact with a Minor in Indian Country, announced U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson.

U.S. District Judge John F. Heil, III, sentenced Kenneth Colby Martinez, 26, Bartlesville, to 120 months imprisonment, followed by 10 years of supervised release. Upon his release, Martinez will also be required to register as a sex offender.

“Kenneth Martinez violated the trust of the Nowata community and took advantage of a student he was entrusted with,” said U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson. “No child should ever need to question if school is a safe place. My office will continue to pursue those who prey on vulnerable children.”  

According to court documents, Martinez began communicating with a student at Nowata Middle School during the 2021-2022 school year. He started coercing and enticing the student through messaging applications. The messages eventually became sexual in nature. On several occasions, Martinez's abusive sexual contact happened in a classroom with the student. 

Martinez is not an Indian. The student is a citizen of the Cherokee Nation. The crimes occurred within the boundaries of the Cherokee Nation. Martinez will remain in custody pending transfer to a U.S. Bureau of Prisons facility.

The FBI and Nowata Police Department investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Valeria G. Luster and Aaron Jolly prosecuted the case.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Childhood, a nationwide initiative to combat the growing epidemic of child sexual exploitation and abuse launched in May 2006 by the Department of Justice. Led by U.S. Attorneys' Offices and CEOS, Project Safe Childhood marshals federal, state, and local resources to better locate, apprehend and prosecute individuals who exploit children via the Internet, as well as to identify and rescue victims. For more information about Project Safe Childhood, please visit


Public Affairs

Updated February 28, 2024

Project Safe Childhood