A Florida teacher faces felony child abuse charges after a reported incident involving face masks. Largo High School teacher Christina Reszetar allegedly sprayed disinfectant at her students because they weren’t wearing their face masks properly.
According to the Largo Police Department, Reszetar became aggressive because four students refused to wear their face masks properly in the classroom. Reszetar, an Exceptional Student Education math teacher, allegedly sprayed aerosol disinfectant into the faces and bodies of the students.
Reszetar was escorted from the Largo High School, located in a suburb of Tampa, and booked into the Pinellas County jail on Wednesday. She was charged with four counts of felony child abuse with great bodily harm.
The 51-year-old educator appeared before a judge on Thursday.
“In the courtroom, Reszetar told the judge she teaches Learning Disabled Math at Largo High School and has been a teacher for 21 years, 18 of them at Largo High School,” WFLA-TV reported.
“I think I can fairly characterize this as a severely misguided attempt at discipline,” the judge said in court on Thursday.
The incident was reportedly captured on surveillance video, but police have not released a copy of the footage. Reszetar said in court that the video would show the allegations are not true.
The judge asked Reszetar, “Are you going to be able to hire a lawyer to represent you?” The teacher responded, “I will not be able to afford one on my teacher’s salary.”
Reszetar was released from Pinellas County Jail on Thursday night on her own recognizance. Since the teacher had no serious prior record, the judge released her from jail without bond. A Pinellas County School District spokeswoman said Reszetar is still employed with the school district.
As part of its coronavirus precautions, Pinellas County schools require students and staff to wear face masks and maintain 6 feet of social distance.
This isn’t the first time that teachers have allegedly acted erratically during the COVID-19 pandemic. Last month, an Oregon teacher flipped out on anti-lockdown protesters in the town of Bend.
In the summer, teachers organized a mass “sickout” to force a school district in Arizona to cancel reopening during the coronavirus pandemic.
Largo Teacher faces child abuse charges after she said students weren’t wearing masks properly