School Board Member Resigns in Wake of Spitting Incident

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When Rick Roberts submitted his resignation as a trustee to the Blaine County School Board, he cited only "personal issues and commitments" and possible "distractions." What he didn't mention was that he had been cited for allegedly grabbing a teenager by the neck at an Aug. 29 concert.

This week's Idaho Mountain Express reports that Roberts' attorney insists his client was innocent and that the incident occurred only after a 16-year-old spit on Roberts.

According to Ketchum police records, the incident occurred Aug. 29 at River Run. That's where Roberts, who had joined the school board only a few months earlier, is alleged to have grabbed the teen by the neck and forced him to the ground after the boy "spit a loogie" five to six feet to the right of where Roberts was sitting. Roberts said he felt spit on his neck, and he "only pushed" the 16-year-old in the "upper torso/shoulder area." But a police report indicates that the there was redness on the boy's neck and a small abrasion near his collarbone.

Roberts has a court appearance scheduled for Monday, Oct. 6.

Meanwhile, Roberts, who was appointed to the school board this past May, sent his resignation letter to the Blaine County School Board on Oct. 1. His resignation is expected to be formal on Oct. 14. He had filled a seat vacated by another former school board member who was embroiled in his own controversy, according to the Mountain Express, when complaints emerged following a New Year's Eve Party involved underage drinking at his home.