Former teacher pleads guilty to battery

Former teacher pleads guilty to battery

FULTON COUNTY, AR (KAIT) - A former Region 8 teacher accused of sexual assault pleaded no contest to third-degree battery and was sentenced to a one-year suspended imposition of sentence.

According to court documents, David Thomas Cone of Melbourne entered that plea Tuesday.

He was also ordered to pay $2,700 in fines and court costs as well as $5,000 restitution.

He will not have to register as a sex offender but he was ordered to permanently surrender his teacher's license.

Cone was arrested in August of 2015 after a 12-year-old girl told a special agent with the Arkansas State Police that Cone "fondled her buttocks" at least two times when he was her teacher between 2008 and 2009.

Cone worked for the Salem School District at the time.

The girl also told police the incidents happened once at her house and once at her friend's house, both in Fulton County.

When police originally interviewed Cone, he told the special agent he did on one occasion in 2008 or 2009 "intentionally put his hand on the buttocks of the alleged victim" at a friend's house.

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