Sponsored by:

Comment, blog & share photos

Log in | Become a member
The Honolulu Advertiser
Posted on: Wednesday, December 27, 2006

Second teacher pleads not guilty

By Peter Boylan
Advertiser Staff Writer

Benjamin Ayson

spacer spacer

Lisa Luhrsen

spacer spacer

The second of two public school teachers charged with smoking marijuana in a parked car near their campus pleaded not guilty yesterday in Wahiawa District Court.

Benjamin Ayson was arraigned yesterday and entered a plea of not guilty.

Ayson's attorney, David J. Gierlach, did not return a message seeking comment yesterday.

Ayson and a fellow Mililani Middle School teacher, Lisa Luhrsen, were arrested and charged with a petty misdemeanor after a parent alleged to school officials that the two were smoking marijuana in Ayson's truck off the school campus on Dec. 4.

Luhrsen pleaded not guilty earlier this month and is scheduled to go on trial March 8.

Ayson's attorney has claimed the pair were sharing a cigarette.

Both teachers were released on $50 bail.

They are on paid leave from their teaching positions.

Luhrsen is a math teacher, and Ayson is a language arts teacher. Both have been at the school for several years.

The two have "good rapport" with staff and students, school officials said at the time of their arrest.

Ayson and Luhrsen were not working with students when they were confronted by school administrators or when they were arrested.

Reach Peter Boylan at pboylan@honoluluadvertiser.com.