Thursday, June 28, 2007
Coke In Classroom Update
Cocaine use costs teacher her license
I want to prove that I am better than that one instance shows,” substitute teacher Joan M. Donatelli said shortly after she was sentenced Wednesday for using cocaine in a Lewiston-Porter classroom.
Donatelli, 59, of Thornwood Drive, will not spend time in jail but must surrender her state teaching license, said Town Justice Thomas J. Sheeran. She could have faced up to 60 days in jail for misdemeanor attempted criminal use of a controlled substance. She accepted the reduced plea April 18.
“I got carried away,” she said in court. “I was blind — almost imprisoned [by the drugs]. Something good has come out of this. I am recovering.”
Donatelli, who retired after 34 years as a district elementary school teacher, was working as a substitute Feb. 1 when two fourth-grade girls sitting near her desk saw her use a pen cap to snort cocaine from a plastic bag.