Manatee teacher under investigation, accused of dragging student across classroom

Posted at 11:14 PM, Mar 29, 2017

A Manatee County teacher has been removed from the classroom after a complaint alleging that he had improper contact with a student.  

The allegations stem from an incident earlier this month at Bayshore Elementary School. 

School district officials are not releasing the teacher's name because he has not been charged with a crime, but the school district and Manatee County Sheriff's Office are conducting investigations. 

A Manatee County Schools spokesperson says the teacher has been working in the district since 1990. 

That teacher has been reassigned to a non-student work location during the duration of the two investigations. 

"There were allegations of improper student contact that resulted in the immediate removal of a teacher from the classroom," said Mitchell Teitelbaum, an attorney for the Manatee County School District. 

Sheriff's deputies went to a 7-year-old student's house to investigate child abuse allegations. 

According to a Sheriff's report, the allegations stated that the victim was "under a table during a class when the suspect pulled the victim from under the table by his backpack or hood of his jacket. The allegations stated that the suspect then pulled the victim approximately seven feet and put the victim in a corner."

The report also states that the victim suffered a red mark on his neck. 

"His throat was all red and stuff," said 10-year-old Jeremiah Perry. "And the zipper was like right there and he was grabbing him by the hoodie."

Perry says he witnessed the incident in the school media center. 

"He grabbed the kid from his hoodie and was choking him and kind of set him down in the corner and the kid was crying," said Perry. "His face was all red and stuff."

A spokesperson with the Manatee County Sheriff's Office told ABC Action News that the teacher declined to be interviewed for their investigation, instead seeking legal counsel. 

The Manatee County Sheriff's Office says it's now up to the State Attorney's Office to decide if the teacher will face child abuse charges.