Crime

Substitute Teacher Arrested, Charged With Sexually Assaulting Student

| by Sean Kelly

Linda Hardan, a 21-year-old substitute teacher at Manchester Regional High School in Haledon, New Jersey, was arrested and charged with sexually assaulting a 16-year-old male student.

According to NorthJersey.com, Hardan brought the student to an unnamed location after school hours on Thursday, where the incident occurred. Gyselle Da Silvia, senior assistant prosecutor in Passaic County, told reporters that due to the ongoing investigation she could not disclose exactly how officials learned of the assault. The incident reportedly occurred in nearby Wayne, NJ.

Details of the incident have not been released, but Hardan has been charged with endangering the welfare of a child, sexual assault, and criminal sexual contact. Hardan is reportedly at Passaic County Jail on $250,000 bail. Prosecutor M. Valdes says that if Hardan is convicted of the crime, she “faces up to 10 years in prison on the charge of sexual assault, up to five on the charge of endangering the welfare of a child and up to 18 months on the charge of criminal sexual contact.”

Authorities say that Hardan herself had attended Manchester Regional High School before becoming a substitute teacher there. It is not known how long she had been teaching there before the assault occurred. 

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"We are disappointed to learn that someone who occasionally worked as a substitute at the school engaged in an inappropriate relationship with a student," Richard Ney, principal of Manchester Regional, told NJ.com.

According to the NY Daily News, Hardan’s employer is the Passaic County Educational Services Commission.

Sources: NorthJersey.com, NJ.com, NY Daily News / Photo Credit: nbcnewyork.com