A Southern California high school student pleaded not guilty on Tuesday to charges stemming from a classroom fight with a teacher that was caught on cellphone video.
Blair Moore, 18, was released on his own recognizance following his arraignment on two counts of threatening a public school official, possession of a box cutter on school grounds, possession of marijuana on school grounds and force or violence against a school employee. The charges were less-serious misdemeanor offences.
He and a 16-year-old student from Santa Monica High School were arrested Friday in connection with the brawl.
The second student is accused of battery against a school employee.
The teacher, identified as Mark Black, who is also the school's wrestling coach, was caught on cellphone videos fighting with a student Friday.
The student was accused of possessing marijuana in class.
No punches were thrown, but Black can eventually be seen on the video with his arms locked around the student's legs, on the classroom floor. Some witness reports indicated the teacher had been stabbed with a pencil.
Black was was placed on leave.
Santa Monica-Malibu Unified School District Superintendent Sandra Lyon said in a letter on Friday that she was alarmed by what she saw of the videos capturing the fight, which caused Santa Monica police to come to the school.
But over the weekend she apologized, saying she had pre-judged the incident based on video that shows "a piece of this story."
Students, meanwhile, rallied behind the teacher.
A Facebook page titled "We Support Coach Black of Samohi" was set up to support him.