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Ex-teacher’s aide calls touching ‘unintentional’

RICHMOND, Va. (WTVR) – Lawyers for the former Richmond elementary school teacher’s aide charged with sex crimes against children said any perceived inappropriate touching was unintentional.

The trial for Alex Erby started Wednesday in Richmond’s John Marshall Courthouse.

Erby is accused of sexually assaulting two students last year. Prosecutor Edward Nickel said Erby touched one child’s buttocks twice and made a crude remark after hugging her in the school hallway. They said he assaulted a second child when he touched her breasts while removing a cell phone from her shirt.

Erby pleaded not guilty to two counts of aggravated sexual battery and two counts of taking indecent liberties with a child under his supervision just after the jury was seated.

During jury selection, a supervisor with Richmond Public Schools’ security was tight lipped, but said he will testify during the trial.

Erby was an instructional assistant at G.H. Reid Elementary School in May 2012 when he was officially charged.

It is unclear if the alleged victims were students of Erby. Richmond Public Schools released a statement saying that the district acknowledged the arrest, but could not comment on personnel issues. Erby was a teacher’s aide and a hall/lunch monitor with direct supervision of both victims.

The trial will resume on Thursday.

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