PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A former local teacher, accused of stealing computers from a school and participating in a bank robbery, was in court Tuesday morning.
Her lawyer talked about her troubled past and addiction to drugs.
Former CAPA teacher Philicia Barbieri is in the Allegheny County Jail. She is charged with stealing computers from CAPA, burglarizing a neighbor’s home and helping her 28-year-old boyfriend, Alvin Carter III, rob the Fifth Third Bank on Penn Circle in East Liberty.
The motive in all the crimes was to allegedly pay for heroin.
“She understands the seriousness of what occurred here and the impact it’s going to have on her life,” Attorney Pat Tomassy said.
Tomassy spoke after waiving Barbieri’s preliminary hearing on bank robbery and other charges.
“She had a $100 a day habit. That’s a lot of money for a school teacher. It happens all the time, happens all the time. People who would never ever think about violating the law become addicted to these drugs and commit felonies,” Tomassy said.
Tomassy pointed out that Barbieri’s six-month slide from promising young teacher to an alleged bank robber and heroin addict was helped along by her boyfriend.
He said Barbieri a victim of heroin and Alvin Carter III.
He also had a hearing this morning, which was continued. The judge denied a request to reduce his bond and he remains in the Allegheny County Jail on $25,000 bond.
Barbieri will spend the next 90 days at a drug treatment facility to get clean before the court process begins.