The mother of a high school student in the region has been arrested for allegedly sneaking into the school dressed as a student so she could watch her daughter fight with another student.
The incident took place in Dutchess County at Arlington High School around 7:30 a.m., Tuesday, Jan. 17.
Immediately following the altercation, it was discovered that the mother of one of the students involved in the fight was in the building without prior authorization, said Capt. John Watterson of the Dutchess County Sheriff's Office.
"She allegedly entered the building during arrival disguised as a student," Watterson said.
An investigation by the Sheriff’s Office and the Arlington Central School District has resulted in the arrest of Valerie Albelo, age 33, of Lagrangeville, Watterson said.
Albelo was arrested on Sunday, Jan. 22, and has been charged with criminal trespass in and endangering the welfare of a child, which are both misdemeanors.
After being processed she was released with an appearance ticket returnable to the Town of LaGrange Court on Tuesday, Feb. 7.
Following the arrest, Dr. Dave Moyer, Arlington Superintendent of Schools, issued the following statement: “I commend our staff and Arlington High School safety personnel who intervened immediately during the altercation and quickly identified the parent who entered the high school without approval."
Moyer said the district was reviewing its procedures of student arrival and tightening security protocols at the school after the incident.
"We are aware of the seriousness of this parent’s actions and the impact on school safety," Moyer added.
Dutchess County Sheriff Kirk Imperati said the school would be checking student IDs during morning arrival and that students must have their ID visible to gain entry to the building.
"High School students and staff are required to wear their Arlington IDs at all times during the school day and during after-school activities," the sheriff said.
The Arlington Central School District has a strict visitor policy. In order to visit Arlington schools during the school day, parents and guests must have an appointment. All visitors must enter and exit through the main entrance. In order to be buzzed into the building, the visitor should:
- Show a photo ID to the camera
- Identify the purpose of their visit, including with whom they have a scheduled appointment.
- Upon being granted entry, the visitor must report directly to the building greeter and show photo identification.
- Visitors must wear a visitor badge at all times while in the school or on school grounds.
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