Police: Teacher admits to having sex with, punching teen

Police: Manuel Cruz, 53, charged with unlawful sex with certain minors, simple battery

HIALEAH, Fla. – A high school teacher in Miami-Dade County admitted to having sex with a 17-year-old girl and punching her in the face, police say.

Authorities said Manuel Cruz, 53, admitted to engaging in sexual intercourse with the victim on one occasion and punching her in the face.

The victim said she drank and smoked marijuana at the Cruz's apartment complex on Dec. 20, 2012. That's when Cruz asked the teenager to have sex with him, according to authorities.

The victim told investigators she refused, at which time Cruz punched her in the face with a closed fist, injuring her left eye and cheek and causing her to lose consciousness, authorities said.

Officers said they transported Cruz to the Hialeah Police Department. Authorities said Cruz then confessed.

Investigators said Cruz told them he had three alcoholic drinks before and during his encounter with the victim.

Cruz was arrested and transported to jail. He has been charged with unlawful sex with certain minors and simple battery.

Cruz taught at Hialeah High School.