The video shows a school employee hitting a 3-year-old nonverbal autistic boy in the head

By | September 15, 2023

The video shows a school employee hitting a 3-year-old nonverbal autistic boy in the head

The parents of a 3-year-old nonverbal autistic boy released a video showing a school employee hitting their son in the head and then carrying him upside down by both ankles.

The 17-second video, which Taneshia Lindsay shared on her Facebook page, shows security footage of the hallway of the Rosa Parks Early Learning Center in Dayton, Ohio, on August 21. She and the child’s father, Robert Tootle, accused administrators of downplaying the problem. accident and failing to publish the full video.

Lindsay said a school administrator initially told her that her son, Braylen, had been “swatted” by a school employee. But security video from inside the school painted a completely different picture, she said at a news conference Wednesday.

The employee also resigned after being placed on administrative leave, Interim Superintendent David Lawrence said.

Taneshia Lindsay and Robert Tootle's son, Braylen.  (Courtesy of Wright and Schulte)

Taneshia Lindsay and Robert Tootle’s son, Braylen. (Courtesy of Wright and Schulte)

In the short video, Braylen is seen running down a hallway. The school employee chases the child and then appears to hit him in the head, causing him to fall, the video shows. The employee then appears to carry Braylen upside down by her ankles.

“When she [the principal] let us know, it wasn’t the whole truth,” Lindsay said. “As you can see, it was a lot worse than that.”

Their lawyer Micahel Wright said the school “lied to this family” and “kept them in the dark.”

“They have not been transparent and need to be held accountable,” he said.

Lindsay said she had to email Dayton Public Schools three times before receiving the short clip. The video was given to her on Monday, three weeks after the incident.

The family and their attorney are now asking the district to be transparent and provide them with the full video.

“Why was Braylen running away from him like that? Maybe he wasn’t being playful,” Lindsay told reporters. “I don’t know. I don’t do the before, I don’t do the after because they cut it out.

“They are two different stories and there is yet another part of the video that we haven’t seen,” Tootle added. “That’s my main thing. What we’ve already seen is bad enough, so what’s missing?

Braylen held by his ankles at the Rosa Parks Early Learning Center in Dayton, Ohio.  (Courtesy of Wright and Schulte)

Braylen held by his ankles at the Rosa Parks Early Learning Center in Dayton, Ohio. (Courtesy of Wright and Schulte)

Lindsay also questioned why her son wasn’t treated kinder, saying “this is clearly assault.”

“He wasn’t doing anything wrong. She was running away. He wasn’t going to get anywhere. That building is locked. You could have hugged him, you could have let another teacher do it,” she said, getting emotional. “I don’t know what was going on in that man’s head, but my son didn’t deserve this.”

Dayton Public Schools said Friday that parents were notified of what happened the day of the incident. The district said it also alerted the Department of Human Resources, the Department of Safety and Security and the Ohio Department of Education.

In a statement Wednesday, Lawrence said the district is taking additional steps to ensure employees are properly trained and qualified.

“We remember that the safety of all students is our top priority and we would like to thank families for their support as we work to ensure a safe school environment for all students,” she said.

Taneshia Lindsay and Robert Tootle.  (WDTN)

Taneshia Lindsay and Robert Tootle. (WDTN)

The district did not release the name of the school employee. The family said they want the employee arrested and charged.

Dayton police said Friday they had submitted the case to the Montgomery County Prosecutor’s Office. A spokesperson for the prosecutor’s office said they will “review the evidence for any appropriate criminal charges” once the investigation is complete.

Tootle said she has always been afraid to send Braylen to school because she doesn’t speak. Lindsay said that at the beginning of the school year, she gave the school a sheet that listed Braylen’s likes, dislikes and behaviors because she wanted to “set them up for a successful year.”

At this time, the family has no plans to remove Braylen from the school.

“He trusts his teacher. He goes with them willingly,” Lindsay explained. “As long as they respect my son, I will continue to let him go to school.”

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