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Linwood teacher to go to trial in chair-kicking incident

A Linwood teacher charged after she allegedly injured a student by kicking his chair out from under him will go to trial later this year.
Kimberly Peschi, 40,is charged with cruelty and neglect of a child and simple assault in the Feb. 9 incident. The then-12-year-old sixth-grader struck his head when Peschi allegedly kicks the back of his chair as he is rocking back and forth.
A trial date will be set in November or December in Linwood Municipal Court, where the case is being prosecuted by Atlantic County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Seth Levy.
A camera inside the Belhaven  Middle School lunchroom caught the Feb. 9 incident on video.
The boy’s mother has called it “compelling.”
If convicted, Peschi could face as long as six months in jail, but imprisonment is unlikely for a first offense of this degree.
“I feel that what happened was an unfortunate accident and not a criminal offense,” her attorney, Robert Agre, told BreakingAC outside the courthouse.
But the student’s mother adamantly disagreed.
“The video will clearly show that this was no accident and it was intentional and deliberate,” she said.
BreakingAC is not naming the mother to protect the identity of the juvenile victim in the case.
Municipal Court Judge Timothy Maguire set Oct. 25 as the deadline for Agre to submit his brief. Levy has until Nov. 22 to respond.
Peschi is suspended without pay.

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