A veteran teaching assistant accused of sexually assaulting a nonverbal autistic student in a classroom filled with other students and adults will not face felony sex-abuse charges, the Daily News has learned.
Alameldin Abdelrahim was accused of placing the head of a 5-year-old kindergartner on his groin while sitting on a rocking chair and reading to the child.
The 62-year-old was allegedly caught by another paraprofessional on Sept. 14 with an erection inside the classroom at Public School 200K on Benson St. in Bath Beach, Brooklyn.
A source familiar with the case said that even after Abdelrahim’s colleague allegedly saw his erection, he was not immediately removed from the classroom and was allowed to take the students to lunch.
The next day, Abdelrahim was arrested and charged with first-degree sexual abuse and other charges.
He was immediately fired from the Department of Education.
If Abdelrahim has been convicted of the top felony charge, it could have landed him in upstate prison for up to seven years.
At Abdelrahim’s criminal court arraignment, his attorney, Robert Riether, said “the eyewitness was mistaken.”
On Wednesday, prosecutors modified the allegations against Abdelrahim and dropped the sex crime charges.
According to the new criminal complaint, the former 18-year educator was in a rocking chair reading to the student when he allegedly placed his hand on the child’s shoulders.
The boy’s “head was leaning back into the defendant’s lap and (the) defendant was moving his legs together and apart,” according to the complaint.
When Abdelrahim removed his hand from the child’s shoulder, his colleague allegedly saw an erection in his pants, according to the complaint.
“The charges were reduced today to endangering the welfare of a child and attempted endangering the welfare of a child. The felony can’t be proven beyond a reasonable doubt,” said a spokeswoman with the Brooklyn district attorney’s office.
Abdelrahim, who posted $60,000 bail, faces up to a year if convicted for the misdemeanor charges.
His new attorney, Jay Schwitzman, declined to comment on the ongoing investigation.
Despite the reduced charges, Abdelrahim’s employment status with the DOE is still terminated, a source said.