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Teacher resigns after admitting to stealing books

NEWPORT, Ky. (Joe Webb) -- A local school teacher was out of work after she got caught stealing on the last day of class.

Jennifer Waltner resigned after police caught her with $2,000 worth of books.

On the last day of class for the 2014 school year, June 6, Newport Primary School was a crime scene.

Newport School Board Attorney, Brandon Voelker, said, "I believe one of the employees got wind of the fact a teacher was taking supplies, books, to start her own pre-school."
    
Teacher Jennifer Waltner promoted Calmhaven Child Care online with pictures taken in her Bridgetown neighborhood.  Newport police reports showed they found more than $2,000 worth of books in her car when she left school on the last day.  Police said she admitted she was taking them to support her own school.

Newport School Superintendent, Kelly Middleton, said, "The teacher's no longer with us.  She did resign."
  
Middleton praised the school principal and school resource officer for catching a thief.  The $2,000 value could lead to felony charges but won't, Newport police closed the case last Friday.

"The agreement she reached with the police was that she was going to return all the items and in lieu of that, the decision was made she would terminate her employment with the district.  And that would resolve the matter with the school district," said Voelker.  "The best thing that happened was we have a great school resource officer and we have administrators that are hands on.  They caught the problem, dealt with the problem and now the problem's gone."

Local 12 was not able to track down Jennifer Waltner Thursday.  The school district said she kept her word and returned all the stolen materials.
     
The incident has been reported to Kentucky's professional standards board, the group that certifies teachers.  Jennifer Waltner taught in Newport since 2006.



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