Student Arrested For Attempted Murder Of Teacher Over Grades

By Rick Gonzales | Published

high school student

A 16-year-old high school student in Las Vegas has been arrested for sexual assault and attempted murder of a teacher. According to the Las Vegas Police, officers were sent to El Dorado High School in response to a report of an injured teacher. When they arrived, police say, the female teacher was being treated by medical personnel for a number of injuries.

The horrific incident started when the high school student, now identified by Las Vegas Metropolitan Police as Jonathan Eluterio Martinez Garcia, entered the unidentified female teacher’s classroom to discuss a dispute in grades. At some point, things went from bad to worse. The student became violent and attacked the unsuspecting teacher. He began punching her and then strangling her until she lost consciousness.

After the violent attack, the high school student fled. The victim was eventually found by another employee. First responders arrived on the scene to treat her injuries. The teacher was then transported to the local hospital in “stable condition.”

Police were able to track down Garcia a couple of blocks away, south of the high school. He surrendered without any incident. The high school student was taken into custody, taken to the Clark County Detention Center, and booked on six felony counts on charges that include attempted murder, sexual assault, battery with intent to commit sexual assault, first-degree kidnapping, and robbery.

high school student

Clark County School District Superintendent Dr. Jesus Jara sent a letter to district staff regarding the tragic incident:

Dear CCSD Staff,

The safety of every Clark County School District (CCSD) student and employee is our top priority. I am devastated, and the CCSD family hurts for the teacher assaulted at Eldorado High School. Our hearts are heavy because of the violence committed against her, and we pray for her full recovery. As I have said previously, “Violent acts, assaults, and bullying will not be tolerated in the Clark County School District, and those who choose to engage in these activities will be prosecuted to the fullest extent of the law.” While this incident is now in the hands of the Las Vegas Metropolitan Police Department, rest assured that this suspect will be held to account for his actions. Let me say again, unequivocally, violence will not be tolerated at Clark County Schools or against our students or staff.

Sincerely,

Superintendent Jesus F. Jara

The high school student attack on the teacher is just the latest violent incident that has taken place on the many campuses within the Clark County School District, which prompted this reaction from John Vellardita, Executive Director of the Clark County Education Association: “The staff at the school clearly is aware that there are significant safety issues and behavioral issues particular violent behavioral issues among students, and they are very concerned about what steps are going to be taken before schools reopen after spring break… as tragic as it is, it is not a surprise because we have seen consistently over the last few months a growing escalation of violent behavior.”

high school student

Escalation may be an understatement. Since the beginning of the school year, Clark County School District police Chief Henry Blackeye said there have been over 3,000 reported incidents. These include assaults on staff as well as fights among high school students. The assaults prompted one teacher to address the Clark County School District Board of Trustees during a recent meeting. “I am a teacher,” said Gretta Blunt-Johnson, “and I was assaulted and you all need to do something about it.” Blunt-Johnson is 73 years old. Teachers and staff are now planning a “Stop School Violence” protest.

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Before this latest high school student/teacher incident, Jara had announced changes to the district’s student code of conduct. “If students violate the student code of conduct, it will be clear what consequences will be,” Jara said in his announcement via News 3 prior to the incident. “Fighting is a major infraction on campus,” he continued. “Fighting that results in significant campus disruption will be a recommended expulsion from school.”

So, what is different in how the school district handled these incidents prior to the changes? Then, if a high school student (or any student) was involved in a violent fight, it would result in discretionary expulsions. Now, it would result in recommended expulsions.

“Students recommended for expulsion for any major disciplinary infraction will be referred to the following: our academic centers, Nevada Learning Academy, the Lighthouse, and Acceleration Academy,” explained Jara. But Jara, like many other school officials across the country, knows that a simple expulsion is not enough. These troubled high school students also need re-engagement and rehabilitation.

“We also know that zero tolerance does not work. We have to take care of our children, our precious asset in this community,” he said, echoing the same sentiments heard in other school districts. “So, we have to find ways to reengage them involving their parents and guardians.” High school student violence. It is on the rise. Can anything be done about it? Are we failing our children? Are we failing our teachers?