11/08/2010 // West Palm Beach, FL, US // Sandra Quinlan // Sandra Quinlan
Hillsborough County, FL—An eighth grade student suffered a strained neck and hemorrhaging in both of his eyes when an aide placed him in a chokehold last Thursday, November 4, 2010. According to information provided by Bay News 9, the 14-year-old boy was restrained upon exhibiting disruptive behavior in the classroom.
Abdullah Fisher, a student at the Dorothy Thomas School, was apparently in class when he pushed a pile of papers out of his teacher’s hand. It appears that when Fisher refused to go to time out, this was the last straw for the teacher.
The teacher’s aide subsequently put Fisher in a neck hold. Fisher contended, “He was choking me and I kept telling him I couldn’t breathe.”
A spokesperson for the Hillsborough County School district alleged the aide was experienced in restraining out of control students and had worked at the Dorothy Thomas School for two years. The aide was placed in a secondary position, away from students, pending a full investigation into the incident.
According to Fisher’s mother, Deborah Williams, “When Abdullah came he had blood running down to the left corner of his eyes and I couldn’t believe it.”
Williams took her son to the hospital and contacted the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office to inform them of the incident. Though Williams confessed her son has mental disabilities and has been known to be disorderly at times, she believes the level of force used in this particular situation was disproportionate.
“I want justice to be served… I want punishment because if it was me, I’m pretty sure enough they would have jailed me and said child abuse,” Williams added. Reports did not specify whether the mother plans to take any legal action in connection with the episode.
Nonetheless, school district spokeswoman Linda Cobbe maintained, “They can be very difficult and depending on the size of the student more people would be in danger… Certainly, any student that’s thrown things or flings their arms or is fighting is a danger not only to teachers but to other students in the class.”
A full probe is expected to be underway.
Phone: (866) 598-1315
Url: Sandra Quinlan: West Palm Beach Injury News