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Mexico teacher accused of abuse sues to get job back

The Audrain County Courthouse
KMIZ
The Audrain County Courthouse

COLUMBIA, Mo. (KMIZ)

A Mexico, Missouri, elementary school teacher accused of abusing a student has sued her former employer to get her job back.

Katrina Dukes was fired after being charged with child abuse and child endangerment in connection with an April incident at Eugene Field Elementary. Dukes was a physical education teacher who was accused of hitting a student with a large bag of balls.

She was fired after an Aug. 10 school board hearing, according to court documents.

Dukes sued the board of education on Sept. 13, asking a judge to reverse the decision. Her lawyer, David Moen, said Monday that the allegations against Dukes were exaggerated.

"I filed this because I think she has a decent chance of having a judge reverse the decision," Moen said. "I think she has a good chance of getting her job back."

The lawsuit petition says the decision was illegal and made without a fair hearing.

The judge initially assigned to the case was recused last week. A new judge was assigned Friday, according to online court records. No hearings have been set.

The Mexico School District said in a news release that the board's decision to fire Dukes was unanimous and was in the students' best interest.

A hearing in Dukes' criminal case is set for Tuesday in Mexico.

Article Topic Follows: Education
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Matthew Sanders

Matthew Sanders is the digital content director at ABC 17 News.

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