Teacher accused of sexual abuse takes the stand - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Teacher accused of sexual abuse takes the stand in his own defense

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LOUISVILLE, KY. (WDRB) -- A former Trinity High School teacher accused of groping a student told his side of the story on Thursday.   

62-year-old Donald Switzer was called as the final witness for the defense.  He testified for about an hour, and once again a lifesize mannequin came into play as Switzer showed how he says he touched the student. 

"I'm walking past him," Switzer said in court, as he walked past the mannequin.  He appeared to touch the mannequin on the chest with the back of his hand, and said, "Hurry up!"  He was asked, "And that's what you did that you're calling a nudge?"  "Yes," Switzer replied.

His accuser used the same mannequin on Wednesday to demonstrate what he described as a groping of his pectoral muscles.  That was back in February of 2011.  The student was 15 years old at the time, and was being held back in class to finish an assignment in Spanish.

The accuser's parents were allowed in the courtroom for the first time on Thursday, and the mother broke down at times during Switzer's testimony. 

Prosecutors hit hard on what they called Switzer's varying accounts of what happened, including what he told Trinity's principal immediately after the incident versus what he told a Child Protective Services social worker and psychologist.

Switzer worked at Trinity 39 years, but was placed on leave last February and eventually retired after accusations of inappropriate conduct came to light.

Switzer faces a misdemeanor count of sexual abuse and harassment with physical contact.  If convicted, he faces 180 days in jail.

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