Cleburne County teacher charged with making threat
by Laura Johnson
Sep 11, 2012 | 14301 views |  0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend | print
A Cleburne County teacher, accused of threatening students with a knife last spring, turned herself in today after Heflin police issued a warrant for her arrest today.

Sara Castro Gonzalez, 50, of Weaver was charged with one felony count of making a terrorist threat. She was booked at the Cleburne County Jail shortly before 9 a.m. and was later released on a $5,000 bond.

The arrest follows a three-month investigation into students’ complaints that the former Cleburne County High School Spanish teacher threatened students after becoming angry, a release from Heflin police states.

“Ms. Gonzalez on at least two occasions had terrorized students and disrupted school activities by telling students she was going to bring a gun and a knife to school and do physical harm to students,” the release states. “Students also alleged that on one occasion Ms. Gonzalez became angry, turning over a desk and then trying to throw the desk putting students at risk of injury.

This year Gonzalez is teaching English to students for whom it is not a first language, Cleburne County Superintendent Mary Harrington said in a recent interview.

Asked about the incident Friday, before charges were filed, Gonzalez denied the students’ accusations but declined to elaborate, citing legal concerns.

“I cannot say anything yet because the lawyer advised me not to talk about the case,” Gonzalez said.

The release states that during the course of the investigation, police interviewed school administrators and students from the high school.

Her attorney, Bill Miller, said that Gonzalez was cooperative during the investigation and restated that she denies the allegations. Miller said the Cleburne County school board took no actions against Gonzalez after the complaints were made.

He added that Gonzalez has been employed by the school system for 10 years.

Contact staff writer Laura Johnson: 256-235-3544. On Twitter@LJohnson_Star.

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