Beth-Center teacher faces drug charges

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A warrant has been issued for the arrest of a Bethlehem-Center special education teacher after Centerville police allegedly found cocaine and drug paraphernalia in her possession on Dec. 28.


Drug charges were filled against Jacqueline M. Righetti, 45, of 41 Jefferson Ave., Roscoe, on Jan. 13 after Centerville police saw her vehicle pulled off at 100 Main Street and Low Hill Road in Denbo, and went to investigate. A warrant was issued for her arrest the next day.


Righetti is listed as a special education teacher at the Bethlehem-Center Elementary School on the district’s website and district Superintendent Linda Marcolini confirmed she is employed in the district.


An officer approached Righetti’s stopped vehicle around 9 p.m. Dec. 28 because he thought it was disabled, according to the criminal complaint. When he got close to the vehicle, he saw a man and a woman moving around inside.


The woman, later identified as Righetti, told police she pulled over to talk with her nephew, and the man gave the same story. The officer noted that Righetti was acting nervous and shaking, according to the compliant. During a search of the vehicle, the officer located two containers; one contained a snorting straw and the other contained two white pills.


A second straw was found in Righetti’s purse, and a white, powdery substance believed to be cocaine was found in her possession.


The man later told police that Righetti told him to lie and that she was not his aunt. He said Righetti was his former teacher, and that they had met to have sex, according to the criminal complaint. The man said he was unaware of the drugs, and was released.


Righetti told police that the substance was cocaine and that she had a drug abuse problem. She said she had last used cocaine roughly one hour prior to police finding her vehicle. Righetti was released pending the identification of the substance, which later tested positive for cocaine.


Righetti faces one misdemeanor count of possession of cocaine and three counts of posession of drug paraphernalia, along with a summary disorderly conduct charge. Marcolini said Righetti’s future with the district is “pending further investigation.”


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