Published June 26, 2008
A fourth-grade teacher on Thursday was found guilty of planting terrorizing notes throughout her Philadelphia-area elementary school.
Susan Romanyszyn was convicted of 11 counts of leaving threatening messages in the hallways of Longstreth Elementary School in the fall, when she was a teacher there, according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.
In October, 15 notes including the messages "You die today," "Bomb today" and "I have a weapon and a nife," were found at the school, The Morning Call reported. In addition, a fake bomb was found in a student's desk and nails were scattered in a faculty parking lot.
"'I believe I became [the scapegoat] when the parents and school needed someone to blame,'" The Morning Call reported of her testimony.
The jury took 11 hours before reaching a verdict. Romanyszyn was found not guilty of creating a weapon of mass destruction, according to the newspaper.
"I think it will give people peace of mind to have closure," Keely Mahan, principal of the Bucks County, Pa., elementary school, told the Inquirer. "But it is not a happy time. It is a sad situation."
Romanyszyn is under house arrest at least until her sentencing in a month. The crimes carry a maximum sentence of 73 years in jail.
She wept when the verdict was read.
"I'm innocent," she told reporters as she left court.