Former Goodyear teacher pleads not guilty to sexual misconduct - WNEM TV 5

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Former Goodyear teacher pleads not guilty to sexual misconduct

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Kyle Curtis DeBerry Kyle Curtis DeBerry
GOODYEAR, AZ (CBS5/AP) -

A former teacher and wrestling coach at Goodyear high school accused of sexual misconduct with a student has pleaded not guilty.

Maricopa County prosecutors said Kyle Curtis DeBerry, 25, entered his plea at his arraignment Monday.

DeBerry was accused of the same thing last year. However, no criminal charges were ever filed, and DeBerry was allowed back to school.

DeBerry taught special education and coached wrestling at Desert Edge High School in Goodyear.

A Goodyear police report from October 2012 stated that DeBerry was observed, "rubbing up against" a student at a homecoming dance and had a student "put her number into his cell phone."

School officials contacted Goodyear police, who started an investigation.

Authorities found there wasn't enough evidence to press criminal charges.

But what about school standards and district code of conduct?

CBS 5 News sat down with Agua Fria High School District Superintendent Dennis Runyan, and asked him why the teacher was allowed to return to school and whether DeBerry violated any district policies.

"In the original investigation, it was not conclusive as to any offense at all," said Runyan. "The evidence that was there was insufficient to take any additional actions."

Runyan told CBS 5 News that he has seen incidents before, where students will falsely accuse a teacher of criminal misconduct.

It's imperative that any decision on a teacher's status be based on factual information, not rumors.

"We did take steps," said Runyan. "We did suspend the employee, pending the investigation. We did do our due diligence. We did report to police."

"Rumor is one thing, but actually taking action against somebody, in terms of discipline is something else," Runyan said.

Investigators said that in the most recent case, a female student reported receiving sexually explicit texts from DeBerry.

DeBerry resigned in August, just a few days after the allegations were made.

Copyright 2013 CBS 5 (KPHO Broadcasting Corporation). All rights reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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