Pittsburgh teacher charged with assaulting a student

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A teacher at Pittsburgh Montessori PreK-8 in Friendship was arrested this week on charges that he choked a student and pushed him in the back of the neck.

Eric Kircher, 38, of Canonsburg was arraigned Wednesday night on charges of endangering the welfare of children and simple assault.

Pittsburgh Public Schools suspended him with pay Oct. 18 pending the outcome of his court case, according to a letter sent home to parents.

Pittsburgh police wrote in a criminal complaint that a 9-year-old told them Mr. Kircher choked him and pushed him in the back of the neck after another student cut in front of him in line while they were lining up alphabetically.

Police wrote that they also spoke to a tutor who said that on Sept. 26 she saw Mr. Kircher “forcefully grab a student by the arm, yanked him down two steps and push him back in line.” The tutor told Pittsburgh police she “immediately returned to her classroom and informed the teacher,” according to the complaint.

Liz Navratil: lnavratil@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1438 or on Twitter @LizNavratil.

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