Ridley teacher gave beer to students, police say

Katherine Preusser

April 4, 2013 4:08:33 PM PDT
A teacher at Ridley High School is accused of giving alcohol to two of her students.

Katherine Preusser, 33, was arrested on March 23rd after her car was stopped by state police in Middletown.

Investigators say a 17-year-old boy was at the wheel and a 17-year-old girl was also in the car. Both are students at Ridley High School where Preusser is an English teacher.

Police say they saw two open beers cans in the car and later allegedly found marijuana in the glove box.

No one answer the door at Preusser's home in Philadelphia's Fishtown section on Thursday.

The school district said Preusser has been suspended while they investigate. Superintendent Lee Ann Wentzel released a statement saying, " We were stunned and upset to hear of the allegations. Allegations of this nature fall well below our expectations, but also undermine the trust of the community."

Michele Patricelli's daughter is in Preusser's class.

"I think it's a disgrace, actually. It's a shame because my daughter's a straight-A student and she said she was a good teacher," Patricelli said.

Preusser is in her second year of teaching at Ridley High School. She's facing a laundry list of charges including corruption of minors.

Preusser faces a preliminary hearing next month. She's unlikely to get jail time, but her career may be over. She could be fired by the district pending the results of its internal review.