The former private school teacher charged with criminal sex act and endangering the welfare of a child for allegedly having oral sex with a 16-year-old student twice was defended by his lawyer (of course) and, more interestingly, by the sister of his ex-fiancee. Richard Hovan's ex-fiancee was the one who called police after discovering Hovan was allegedly having sex with the teen.

Hovan, 30, who went to MIT for undergrad and Columbia for his master's in teaching, had worked at Riverdale Country School when allegations about an inappropriate relationship with a student surfaced. According to the Post's sources, Hovan's then-fiancee, Marina Bontkowski, found out and called the police on him. (The private school says it heard allegations and contacted the authorities, too.) But Bontkowski's sister told the Post yesterday, "He’s a good guy who got caught up in a bad situation. He was just helping a girl out with personal issues, and it got out of hand."

His lawyer, Vinoo Varghese, also agrees that his client is a good guy, pointing to Hovan's 2003 appearance on the Price is Right as evidence (Hovan, at MIT at the time, is happy and giggling): "You can see his genuine nature here." Varghese adds, "He is an outstanding human being, and he has been wrongly charged. As teachers go, [he] is as good as it gets."

Before roadtripping to The Price is Right, Hovan and other MIT students had studied prices of common items featured on the show to prepare to win big. Hovan was actually called down and won three vacations and a dinette set; he said Bob Barker was "really nice."