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Special Ed Teacher To Stand Trial For Allegedly Selling Heroin From His Home

PITTSBURGH (KDKA) - A teacher accused of selling heroin out of a rented home in Robinson Township is going to trial.

Charles Schaldenbrand was in court for a preliminary hearing this morning.

Schaldenbrand faces five felony charges, including possession and delivery of heroin, based on two drug buys initiated by a confidential informant.

He is a special education teacher in the Montour School District. Last month, he was put on suspension.

According to the state Attorney General's Office, Schaldenbrand is accused of selling about $350 worth of heroin to an undercover informant at least twice out of his home in the 100-block of K-Row.

During the hearing, Schaldenbrand's attorney decided not to have a preliminary hearing and sent the case to court, expecting the charges would be held for trial.

"We evaluated the affidavit for probable cause and determined that at this stage, the appropriate thing was to waive it to court, so we're not contesting the charges with regard to probable cause at this hearing," said Bob Del Greco, the defense attorney.

Robinson Police Chief Dale Vietmeier owns the home, and told KDKA-TV's Ralph Iannotti he was "very surprised" to hear about the charges against his tenant.

Vietmeier has ordered him to move out.

"The crazy twist is that he was renting from the chief of police, and the chief asked him to desist from such renting, and Charles understood the implications of that, so he is now residing with his father," said Del Greco.

His attorney says Schaldenbrand is remorseful now.

"Absolutely crestfallen," said Del Greco. "This has turned his life upside down. He was eligible for an 18-year salary increase. He absolutely lived teaching the special children, loved his employment."

By summer the case will either go to trial or he will enter a plea. But that decision has not yet been made.

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