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A Duluth charter school music teacher cornered a preteen student in a stairwell and molested her, according to felony charges.

John P. Horgeshimer, 48, of Hermantown, was charged Thursday in St. Louis County District Court with first- and second-degree criminal sexual conduct in connection with the assault on March 5 at Duluth Edison's Raleigh Academy.

Horgeshimer was arrested Monday and remains jailed in lieu of $75,000 bail. He's due in court on April 9. Court records do not list an attorney for him.

Tammy Rackliffe, head of schools for Duluth Edison, said Horgeshimer went through a background check and was hired in August. He was put on administrative leave and resigned on Thursday, Rackliffe said.

In a message to families and staff, Rackliffe wrote, "It is with a heavy heart that we reach out to you today to inform you about a recent and unfortunate development within our Raleigh school community. We have been made aware of criminal charges against one of our staff members. We want to assure you that the safety and well-being of our students is our utmost priority."

The girl, born in 2012, told police that she was at the charter school starting about 7:35 a.m. to read to younger students when she went to retrieve an eraser and ran into Horgeshimer in a stairwell, according to the charges.

Horgeshimer cornered her and painfully fondled her over her sweater, the charges state. The girl slapped his hand away and escaped despite him stepping on her toes, making it difficult to flee to her classroom.

The girl told her teacher what happened, and she went to the principal's office to report the assault and identify the suspect by name.

State licensing records show Horgeshimer is a musical instrument music teacher and previously taught in the now-defunct Oklee school district in 2005-06.