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February 01. 2013 11:53AM

No charges against Claremont middle school teacher in alleged assault

CLAREMONT – A Claremont Middle School accused of striking a student in Dec. will not be criminally charged, police said Thursday.

The teacher, Tamara Lever, was placed on administrative leave following the assault, pending the outcome of an internal investigation by the Claremont School Administrative Unit.
Police went to the school Dec. 17 around 3:15 p.m. when it was reported a teacher possibly assaulted a 12-year-old male student.

In a press release Thursday Police Chief Alexander Scott said, "The allegation is that the student was fooling with and tossing a cleaning cloth and in response to this conduct, the teacher took the cloth and smacked it against the student's face and stated, 'How do you like it?'"

Scott wrote that while the alleged conduct may have violated school policy and was "not an exercise in sound judgment" the facts do not support a criminal prosecution.

The Sullivan County Attorney's office cooperated in the investigation with police and have decided not to proceed with a criminal prosecution, he said.
In January, Middleton K. McGoodwin, Superintendent of Schools, said the Claremont School Administrative Unit had completed its administrative investigation and was waiting for police to complete the criminal investigation.

At that time, Lever remained on paid leave.
McGoodwin was not immediately available to answer questions about Lever's current employment status with the school district.


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