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Charges filed against teacher

April 07, 2004|by DON AINES

chambersburg@herald-mail.com

FANNETTSBURG, PA. - A social studies teacher has been charged with having indecent contact with three female students at Fannett-Metal High School, Pennsylvania State Police said.

William Bradley Palm, 24, of 300 W. King St., Shippensburg, Pa., was charged March 31 with statutory sexual assault, aggravated indecent assault, indecent assault and three counts of corruption of minors, state police said.

Palm is in his third year as the only social studies teacher at the small high school, school district Superintendent Dana Baker said.

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The high school, in northwestern Franklin County, Pa., has 148 students in grades nine through 12, according to the district's Web site.

One of the alleged victims contacted the high school administration, Baker said.

Palm, who also was head coach of the junior high school boys basketball team, was placed on administrative suspension March 22.

The administration is conducting an investigation, Baker said.

The Pennsylvania Department of Education also has been contacted and likely will conduct an investigation, he said.

Palm's status with the district will be the subject of a closed hearing before the school board at 7:30 p.m. Monday, Baker said.

The alleged incidents took place both on and off school property, Baker said.

Two of the students would have had Palm as a teacher this year and he would have taught the other during the 2002-03 school year, Baker said.

Palm was arraigned Tuesday afternoon before District Justice Richard Alloway, state police said. Alloway said the unnamed students are 14, 15 and 17 years old.

Alloway said he released Palm on $30,000 unsecured bond and ordered him to have no contact with the three students as a condition of his bond. Palm's preliminary hearing is scheduled Tuesday, April 20, in Franklin County Central Court.

Alloway said Palm was staying with his parents while out on bond. A woman who answered the telephone at their Boiling Springs, Pa., home said Palm could not comment on the allegations.

Palm is a Shippensburg University graduate with a degree in secondary education, according to a biography on the school Web site. He is a graduate of Boiling Springs High School.

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