Trial date set for teacher charged with witness intimidation

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PITTSBURGH (AP) — Trial is scheduled Oct. 22 for a western Pennsylvania teacher accused of having intimidated a student who alleged that another teacher had sex with her.

Forty-year-old Drew Zoldak of New Kensington is charged in Allegheny County with witness intimidation. He is on unpaid leave from his Plum school district position.

Two other Plum teachers, Joseph Ruggieri and Jason Cooper, are accused of having sex with students.

Prosecutors allege that Zoldak singled out a student in class who had accused Ruggieri of institutional sexual assault.

Zoldak's attorney has argued that that allegation, even if true, doesn't amount to witness intimidation and Zoldak didn't try to keep the girl from testifying.

Attorney Al Lindsey said after Friday's hearing that he plans to file a pre-trial motion challenging the evidence in the case.

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