Former San Jose teacher charged with assault for coughing in baby’s face, DA’s office says | #teacher | #children | #kids



The Santa Clara County district attorney’s office has charged a former San Jose elementary school teacher with assault, saying she intentionally coughed into the face of a 1-year-old baby in a San Jose yogurt shop last June.

Nancy Nordland, 66, of San Jose, is facing a misdemeanor assault charge after surveillance footage from a San Jose Yogurtland on June 12, 2020 shows her approach a stroller, pull her face mask down, and cough three times into the face of a baby strapped in the stroller, officials said Friday.

San Jose police said she was upset that a woman with the stroller was reportedly not maintaining social distance protocols while in line at the shop. Nordland left the shop without paying for her yogurt, district attorney’s officials said.

Police initially released surveillance footage to the community for tips in identifying the suspect, who was later identified by residents as Nordland, a local teacher. She was a teacher at Alex Anderson Elementary School in San Jose, which is part of the Oak Grove School District, district attorney’s officials said. Nordland was working on the day of the incident, district attorney’s officials said, citing comments from the school principal to police.

Last June, the school district said she was still an employee but “currently off of work and not providing any services to our District students.”

District Attorney Jeff Rosen said “All of us must practice empathy and patience as we work together through this pandemic.” The incident happened within months of the start of the coronavirus pandemic, and after public health officials said droplets from coughing, sneezing and breathing can spread the coronavirus — even from people who are asymptomatic.

“Taking your frustrations out on someone’s child is unacceptable — and criminal,” Rosen said.

Nordland is scheduled for arraignment at 9 a.m. Tuesday at the Hall of Justice in San Jose, authorities said.

Lauren Hernández is a San Francisco Chronicle staff writer. Email: lauren.hernandez@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @ByLHernandez





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