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Former Wrestling Coach and Substitute Teacher Arrested in Heroin Bust

November 15, 2014  |  Posted by: Giovanni DePhillips
Former Wrestling Coach and Substitute Teacher Arrested in Heroin Bust Image courtesy of 13wham.com

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A former Rush-Henrietta coach and substitute teacher is behind bars after police found heroin in his vehicle during a traffic stop Friday morning.

Matthew Champion 30, was arrested along with 20-year-old Treshaun Tucker during the traffic stop in Rochester, New York.

Champion was the JV wrestling coach at Rush-Henrietta. He appeared for his arraignment on Friday, looking a little disheveled after spending the night in the county lockup. He was unshaven and wearing a sweatshirt and jeans. He pleaded not guilty to two counts of criminal possession of drugs. He did have some family in court, including his wife. No one would comment after leaving the courthouse this morning.

According to the criminal complaint, Champion was stopped in his pick-up truck on Evergreen Street in Rochester just before 10 p.m. Thursday for a traffic stop for not having a license plate lamp and for failing to signal. That led to a search of the vehicle and police say they found 198 bags of heroin in a bookbag weighing approximately 45 grams. They also confiscated multiple small glassine bags and wax envelopes.

In the passenger seat was 20-year old Treshaun Tucker of Evergreen Street. He was also charged with drug possession.

Champion, who lives in Scottsville, had worked in the RH district for four years as the JV wrestling coach and as a substitute teacher. He was also a standout wrestler as a student at RH, winning sectional titles in 2001 and 2002.

We contact the district for comment. They issued a statement saying, “Matthew Champion was a coach for the Rush-Henrietta junior varsity wrestling program until last year. He has worked periodically as a substitute teacher for the district but is no longer on our substitute list.”

Rush-Henrietta Sophomore Amir Brock-Owens says, “He was chill. He just let anything go on.”

We asked Brock-Owens if he was surprised by the arrest. He said, “I was amazed that I even heard that, because I never even expected that.”

Sophomore Pinky Besic said, “I’m just surprised by this whole thing. He was amazing and I’m just kind of upset.”

Parents we spoke with say they are concerned about his influence on their kids.
John Lindboom told us, “Heroin is a pretty serious deal. I’m kind of concerned about that, yeah definitely.”

Kimberly Bazinet said, “He should be put away. He shouldn’t be let around kids. He should totally have his license taken away. He just should not be able to be free, getting drugs like that; it’s just morally bad and being around kids like that.”

The judge set Champion’s bail at $15,000. He is scheduled to return to court next Wednesday.

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