Teacher charged with assaulting student

By: News Staff

A Pawtucket teacher has been arrested after allegedly assaulting a middle school student.

On March 18 a parent told police her son had been assaulted by 49-year-old Richard Koster while at Slater Jr. High School. The parent alleged that her son had been grabbed by the teacher, lifted off the ground, and pinned against the wall while the teacher yelled at him.

A court affidavit reveals that the student who claims he was assaulted said that it began when he brought a cookie into class, where food is not allowed.

“We are presented with a  certain amount of facts and we make a determination based on upon what those facts are and in this case there was sufficient reason to indicate that the teacher assaulted a child,” said Major Arthur Martins of the Pawtucket Police Department.

After conducting an investigation police determined there was sufficient evidence to apply for an arrest warrant for Mr. Koster.

On March 27, Koster turned himself into Pawtucket Police. He has been charged with simple assault and was released on $1,000 personal recognizance.

We tried to reach out to him at his Cranston home but he did not answer.

Parents with kids in the Pawtucket school system are concerned with fighting in the schools.

“It's just scary. I went there and you would never think the teachers would stoop so low. And they tell you they're so big on kids keeping their hands to themselves, the teachers can't even do it,” said mom Rosa DePina.

Pawtucket Superintendent Patti Dicenso says Koster wasplaced on administrative leave immediately after the incident, and has notreturned to the school.