Former Utah teacher pleads guilty to felony child abuse; will serve no jail time

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Anthony Robbie Chidester mugshot. (Photo: Utah County Jail)

Anthony Chidester, a former PE teacher at Rockwell Charter School in Eagle Mountain, skipped trial and pleaded guilty to second-degree felony child abuse for an incident in April, where Chidester assaulted a 14-year-old boy at school.

In exchange for the guilty plea, Chidester will serve no jail time and instead do anger management classes and community service.

If he completes all the requirements of the plea deal, the felony conviction will be reduced to a Class A misdemeanor on his record.

The victim and his mother, who were in the courtroom for the hearing in Provo, approved of the plea in abeyance. This keeps the 14-year-old boy and other minor witnesses from testifying at trial.

On April 18, 2019, the boy and Chidester got into an argument in the school gym. Chidester admitted he grabbed the boy by the arm, slammed him against the wall in the school, then pushed the boy down to the ground.

The incident was recorded by a student cell phone and school security camera.

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Chidester apologized to the victim during the court hearing:

I made a horrible mistake that I regret every minute, every day since. I didn't want that to happen to the student.