Arp Elementary counselor released on bail

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Barbara Orpineda, 31, a counselor at Arp Elementary, was arrested and released Oct. 25. She was charged with two counts of improper relationship between educator and student and two counts of sexual assault.

According to AISD Superintendent Dwight Thomas, Orpineda has been employed by the district for five years, two as a junior high math teacher and three as elementary school counselor.

Thomas stated that he has “not seen any statement from her [Orpineda]” and she will remain on leave, rather than having her employment terminated, pending court findings “unless the school lawyer advises differently.” She is not, Thomas reported, still receiving pay by the district.

Chief Craig Robinson, Arp police chief, confirmed Orpineda was allegedly involved with two boys. When questioned about their ages, Robinson would not state the age of either boy, but did say the rumored 14 years of age was incorrect.

When asked if Orpineda gave any comment or statement during the time of her arrest, Robinson said he could not release that information.

Each of the charges against Orpineda is a second degree felony punishable by 2-20 years. Robinson confirmed the investigation into the allegations remains ongoing.

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