Two weeks ago, Tammie Powers says she was buying Lunchables for her teenage daughter. Now she's pleading with her to come home on national television.
In February, Jordan Powers, 18, ran off with her teacher, James Hooker, 41. Hooker, who taught at her Modesto high school, left his wife, three kids and his career behind to move in with his new girlfriend. Since then, Tammie has been on a desperate campaign to put the man, who she believes is brainwashing her daughter, behind bars.
Video: Teacher and student declare love for each other in first interview
This week, Tammie came face to face with 'Mr. Hooker' on Dr. Phil, after weeks of public feuding on Facebook and in the press.
"I think you are arrogant," she hurled at Hooker, as a gawking audience looked on. "I think you are self-serving. I think you are selfish. I think you are ruining my child with this."
Hooker first met Jordan when he taught her ninth grade class. While the couple claims they only became intimate after Jordan's 18th birthday, Tammie doesn't believe it.
"I'd like to get information from when she was a minor and have him arrested," she told the talk show host, who defended her vitriol.
Hooker wasn't quite so sympathetic. "[Tammie] hasn't respected me at all," he said flatly. "But bigger than that is the disrespect she's had for her own daughter."
Tammie has gone on a very public tirade against Hooker, turning her Facebook page into a kind of Most Wanted poster for Hooker. In one status update, she claimed to have phone, email and text records of the couple's exchanges made while Jordan was still underage.
During Dr. Phil's interview, Hooker denied any of those exchanges, but Tammie provided documented proof.
Hooker maintains he and Jordan fell in love at the end of January. "There was a little bit of hugging, kissing," he says adding, "we knew there would be consequences."
In fact, Jordan didn't seem to grasp how serious those consequences would be. "I didn't think about him being married, being my teacher," Powers said. "I didn't care."
Now her life is fractured. Estranged from her her mother and her former social life, she's finishing school through an independent study, and living with Hooker in a temporary apartment, outside which news media have parked indefinitely.
Watch: California teacher accused of sex crime removed from classroom
"You knew there was going to be consequences," Tammie hurled at Hooker. "She's a kid."
As mom and teacher traded barbs, Jordan sat hunched, bangs blanketing her eyes. She looked like a displaced teenager caught between dueling parents.
The moment wasn't lost on Tammie who said she felt like she was engaged in a custody dispute. "You're the dad, I'm the mom."
An eerily calm Hooker interrupted her: "This is actually my girlfriend."
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