Teacher Accused of Trading Gummy Bears for Kiss Pleads Guilty
His lawyer says the student simply initiated a peck on the lips
By Evann Gastaldo,  Newser Staff
Posted May 25, 2017 4:56 PM CDT

(Newser) – A Florida teacher accused of trading gummy bears for a kiss on the lips from a 10-year-old boy pleaded guilty Thursday, WPTV reports. Surveillance video from 28-year-old Brian Kornbluth's classroom at Somerset Academy in Boca Raton shows the kiss; after reviewing the video, police talked to the student's sister, who also said Kornbluth had kissed her at school, ClickOrlando reports. The school's principal had repositioned the surveillance camera to point at Kornbluth's desk after a teacher came to him with concerns about Kornbluth requesting that certain students be moved into his class; the principal ultimately reported the incident to police and Kornbluth was arrested in February.

Kornbluth's lawyer says the boy initiated the kiss because he is familiar with Kornbluth, who had babysat him. She also says it's not fair to say he "lured" the boy with gummy bears, as he simply always has snacks on hand. She says Kornbluth decided to plead guilty because it's the "safest way for him to have a right to teach." In return for his guilty plea, authorities dropped a simple battery charge against him. He will be on probation for one year and must undergo a mental health evaluation and complete any recommended treatment. He has denied kissing the boy's sister.

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