Judge Overturns NYC's Decision to Fire Teacher Caught With Heroin at Jury Duty

Damian Esteban, a teacher at Williamsburg School of Architecture and Design, brought heroin to jury duty last year

Thursday, Sep 19, 2013  |  Updated 3:06 PM EDT
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Judge Reverses Firing of Teacher Caught With Heroin

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A judge has overturned a decision to fire a Brooklyn teacher for carrying heroin when he showed up for jury duty.

City officials said Thursday they would appeal the ruling.

Damian Esteban, who was a teacher at Williamsburg School of Architecture and Design, was arrested last year after courthouse officers discovered a stash of heroin in a cigarette box in his backpack.

He did a one-day treatment program in exchange for having the charges dismissed. The city won an arbitrator's decision to fire him.

In an order issued Monday, the judge called the dismissal an "unduly harsh" punishment. He said Esteban should instead be suspended without pay.

Mayor Bloomberg said Thursday that the reversal shows a "callous indifference" to the well-being of students.


 

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