Erica Shannon Cooper waived formal arraignment Monday and, speaking through her attorney, entered a not-guilty plea in Fayette District Court to charges of endangering the welfare of her child, intoxication and drug-related offenses.
Cooper, 38, a teacher at Henry Clay High School, appeared in court but sat silently near the back of the room. Her attorney, Kim Wilkie, said she would make no comment to the media.
Lexington police arrested Cooper early Friday. Officers said in court filings that she was "manifestly under the influence," and they described her as "belligerent and combative."
While Cooper was being booked into the county jail, she told jail staffers that she had left her 2-year-old daughter home alone. Officers went to Cooper's apartment on North Limestone and found the child. Police said they also spotted a can containing marijuana and a marijuana pipe on a kitchen counter. That led to the charges of endangering the welfare of a minor and possession of marijuana and drug paraphernalia.
Fayette County Public Schools has suspended Cooper with pay, pending an investigation.