A recently filed lawsuit claims that a school employee thew a little boy, who is autistic, across a room leaving bruises and injuries.
School violence is on the rise. But it’s not just an issue of fights breaking out between peer students, but also between faculty and students. As this school year first started, a third-grader suffered a traumatizing event on only his fifth day of school. A recently filed suit claims that the little boy, who is autistic, was thrown across a room by a school employee.
A lawsuit filed by the autistic boy’s mother, Tiria Jones, claims that her nine-year-old son suffered injuries after being thrown across a classroom at a school within the Multnomah Education Service District in Portland Oregon. The complaint was filed with the Multnomah County Circuit Court on March 14th for the incident that occurred on September 7th. The suit claims the worker inflicted illegal corporal punishment, as physical punishment in schools is outlawed within the state.
Within the lawsuit, it is claimed that the autistic student was seen in a surveillance video attempting to open a locked door as he ripped paper off of it. The school worker then allegedly grabbed the boy and tugged him to the school’s seclusion room, which is meant to be used as a last-resort option. The footage is said to show the boy placing his foot in the doorway to keep it from shutting, as the employee picks him up and throws him across the room, striking his head.
Tiria Jones claims that the school district initially told her that her autistic son was placed in restraints and separated from his classmates for climbing on top of a bookshelf kicking and spitting at staff. Jones also states that she has seen the surveillance, but the attorney filing the lawsuit has not obtained the footage yet. However, the lawyer did mention that they have had the footage described to them via three different parties.
The mother also told The Oregonian that her autistic child suffered heavy bruises from the incident. The lawsuit is seeking $700 thousand in damages for the bruises along with emotional harm the suit claims both the mother and the autistic son suffered as a consequence of the violent act. Furthermore, Jones said that she wants to ensure that no other family has to suffer through what her family has. She also called on the district to make changes to keep all students safe from abuse going forward.
As it stands, the district has made little comment to the public about the accusations against the employee, citing pending litigation as a factor. A spokesperson for the Multnomah Education Service District said that the allegations were “deeply concerning”, but she refused to comment on the status of the worker claimed to have thrown the autistic boy across the room. All that is known for sure about the employee is that they were placed on a two-day leave following the incident in September.
As further details remain under wraps for now regarding the autistic student’s lawsuit, this incident is just one of many seen throughout the nation in an alarmingly growing trend. Newly reported data shows that the problem has become so persistent, that reports suggest that public teachers are actually 100 times more likely to abuse kids than catholic priests. And as these reports continue to make their way into national headlines, it’s easy to see why more and more parents are losing hope in America’s public school systems.