PHENIX CITY, AL (WTVM) - An east Alabama teacher faced a judge Tuesday on two felony counts of abuse. We were the only news crew inside the courtroom.
Phenix City intermediate school teacher Sierra Pettway is accused of tying two students' arms together with masking tape.
A Phenix City detective testified the children were tied together for 10 to 15 minutes.
One of the children used a pen to try to get the tape off causing bruising. The elementary school teacher told detectives she taped the students together because they would not stop talking and picking with each other.
"She's absolutely back teaching," said defense attorney W. Don Eddins. "She is not a threat to society. She made a mistake. If what she's accused of is proven to be true then it wouldn't rise to the level of felony where someone commits a willful vicious crime against somebody."
The two counts of felony willful abuse can carry a sentence of 20 years in prison.
The defense argued for the charges to be reduced to misdemeanor harassment.
The judge has continued the case until April 23.