Lori Salgado attended her son's court appearance for the first time Monday, when his bail was reduced from $300,000 to $200,000. Fernando Salgado, 18, is accused of alleged hazing cases at A.B. Miller High School. She spoke exclusively to NBC4 about how she cannot make her son's bond and what school officials have been telling her. Jacob Rascon reports from Fontana for the NBC4 News at 5 p.m. on July 9, 2012.
A judge Monday reduced the bail amount to $200,000 for an 18-year-old high school student accused in alleged hazing cases at A.B. Miller High School in Fontana.
The bail amount for Fernando Salgado was reduced from $300,000 to $200,000.
"We don't have that kind of money; I'm a single mom," Salgado's mother, Lori, told NBC4 exclusively.
In arguing for the bail reduction, Salgado's attorney said his client has no prior felonies or misdemeanors. His next court appearance was scheduled for July 16.
Salgado's bail reduction hearing follows last month's emotional court appearance at which Salgado struggled with deputies as he was escorted from the courtroom.
"I'm fearful for him. They go after people like that," said Lori Salgado, who attended her son's court appearances for the first time Monday. "He's a young -- he just turned 18 -- he's a young kid."
Salgado pleaded not guilty to two felony counts of attempted sexual penetration with a foreign object and two felony counts of false imprisonment by violence.
The charges stem from his alleged involvement in hazing incidents that led to the arrest of a teacher -- 27-year-old masonry teacher Emmanuel De La Rose -- and three other teens. The assaults, detailed in an affidavit submitted to a Fontana Superior Court judge last month, occurred in June, according to authorities.
Salgado's mother, like other family members, said the teenager liked to joke around but doubted he would take it to the level he is accused of.
"He's fun-loving; loves his nieces and nephews," she said. "He would never hurt anybody."
De La Rosa is charged with one felony count of child abuse, two felony counts attempted sexual penetration with a foreign object, two felony counts of false imprisonment by violence, and a misdemeanor count for failure to report suspected child abuse.
De La Rosa was released on bond from San Bernardino County Jail. He's expected to appear in court in August.
Like his teacher, Salgado has been getting support from friends, neighbors and school staff, whom his mother said have been in contact with her.
"I got all kinds of school district employees texting me, 'No, we know Fernando, we know he wouldn’t do this. We know he’s a clown, but he ain’t stupid,'" she said.