School Employee On Leave After 10-Year-Old Claims He Was Choked

By Jonah Spangenthal-Lee October 13, 2011

A Seattle school district employee is on administrative leave after the mother of a Hawthorne elementary school student called police and claimed her 10-year-old son was choked in a classroom last week.

A police report for the incident says two officers went to the boy's home in South Seattle on October 10 after the boy's mother reported her son had come home from school with an injured neck.

The boy told his mother the school employee choked him, the report says. The boy's mother tried to contact the south Seattle school that night, but it had already closed.

According to the report, the incident began after several students began goofing off in a classroom.

At some point, the boy apparently declared "I hate this teacher," and the teacher walked up to him and wrapped both of his hands around his neck, and picked him up.

The details of the incident are a bit murky—the report doesn't say where the rest of the class was during the incident—but the boy told police one other student was present during the incident.

When police asked the 10-year-old why he hadn't called for help or reported the incident at school, he told officers "the teacher said if I asked for help, he would do it again."

The report says the boy had scratches and bruising on his neck.

Seattle school district spokeswoman Teresa Wippel confirmed the staff member is " on administrative leave while we're investigating," but noted the child would not talk to police when an officer visited him at school to discuss the incident a second time.
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