Teacher faces charges on roommate's drug deals
Manchester High School Central art teacher Lisa Tagalakis was in Manchester District Court, arraigned on charges of criminal liability to the sale of drugs and endangering the welfare of a child. (DAVID LANE/UNION LEADER)
MANCHESTER - A Manchester High School Central art teacher, accused of letting a roommate sell drugs out of her 151 Sagamore St. home while her two young children were there, could enter no plea Thursday in Circuit Court, Manchester District Division to a felony charge of criminal liability for the sale of a narcotic.
Lisa Tagalakis, 42, is accused of renting a room to Robert Doane, 26, for $100 a week, with the agreement that Doane would be packaging and selling heroin from that location.
Court documents show she told police that she allowed Doane to do so because money was "tight." A listing of education department salaries for 2010 showed Tagalakis grossed just under $59,000 that year.
According to court documents, she also told police that it was convenient to have Doane there so she could leave her children with him while she and her boyfriend were away from the house.
Tagalakis pleaded innocent to a misdemeanor charge of endangering the welfare of a child. Tagalakis is accused of endangering her preschool children by letting Doane possess and deal heroin from the house while he was armed.
Court documents also show the children's room was across from the one shared by Tagalakis and White, where a gun identified as belonging to Doane was left, loaded with hollow point bullets, on top of a dresser.
Police reported finding a marijuana pipe on the dresser and another on the floor and two baggies of a suspected narcotic inside the top dresser drawer.
Police said Tagalakis told them she kept a Highpoint C-9 semi-automatic pistol on a shelf in her closet in the bedroom. She also told them she and White had recently sold two other handguns.
Tagalakis waived a reading of the charges Thursday in Circuit Court and bail was continued at $10,000 personal recognizance. A probable cause hearing on the felony charge was set for March 26, when there will also be a status hearing on the misdemeanor.
At the time of Tagalakis' arrest, school Superintendent Tom Brennan said: "She's been placed on paid administrative leave pending the outcome of the criminal investigation," He confirmed Thursday that Tagalakis remains on paid administrative leave.
Tagalakis' tenant, Doane, also appeared in Circuit Court Thursday, where he waived a probable cause hearing and charges were bound over to the Hillsborough County North Grand Jury.
Doane is charged with five felonies: possession of a narcotic drug, attempted sale of a narcotic drug, armed career criminal, receiving stolen property (gun) and convicted felon in possession of a dangerous weapon (gun).
Although Doane appeared calm at Thursday's court hearing, court documents show he became very upset Feb. 6 during a conversation with his friend, Tagalakis' boyfriend, 21-year-old Kristopher White.
The conversation, recorded with permission from the Attorney General's Office, has Doane asking White to "eat" the stolen gun charge for him.
The court documents show Doane was crying, telling White that if he were charged: "Dude, I'm looking at 10-plus (years) with all this." Doane also said: "I gotta get outta here. I gotta go somewhere. I'm ready to off myself."
But at Doane's hearing Thursday, his attorney, Carl Olson told Judge Gregory Michael: "He's not a risk of flight." Olson asked that bail be reduced from $75,000 cash/surety to $25,000 cash/surety.
Olson said Doane, who was on parole at the time of his arrest, faces a parole board hearing next month.
City prosecutor Jeremy Harmon argued for retention of the $75,000 cash/surety bail, ticking off Doane's record: 2004, criminal mischief and shoplifting; 2005, carrying/sale of a weapon; 2006, drug possession, burglary and falsifying physical evidence; 2007, two robbery charges, harassment; 2009, violation of probation/parole, 2010, willful concealment, felony theft, criminal mischief and felony theft/burglary.
Harmon said that Doane, born in 1986: "has amassed a criminal record with some very serious offenses."
Judge Gregory Michael, who originally set bail at $75,000 cash/surety, said he was going to maintain it. "I'm quite concerned with the defendant's prior behavior," said Michael.
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