An elementary teacher was placed on administrative leave pending an investigation after video evidence shows the teacher aggressively dragging a 5-year-old student out of a bookcase and then kicking her when she was down. The girl then told her homeroom teacher of the assault, but her accusation was brushed off as that teacher didn’t believe her.
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On Feb. 21, Crystal Smith, who is a teacher at Bluejacket-Flint elementary school in Kansas, was seen on video getting irate with a young student who was hiding in a bookshelf in the school’s library.
Smith can be seen approaching the 5-year-old student and grabbing her by the arm in an aggressive manner. After being dragged by her arm out of the cubby, Smith can then be seen kicking the young girl in her back.
According to the Daily Mail, the young student proceeded to tell her homeroom teacher what had just happened but was brushed to the side. Later that day, the girl’s mom picked up her and asked how her day was.
“I don’t like my teacher,” she said. “She’s really mean. She hit me on my arm.” Noticing a large welt on her daughter’s arm, the mother called the principal the next day to see what had happened. When she called the school, Smith, the teacher who allegedly hit her daughter, answered the phone instead. She insisted that she had not caused the welt on the child.
“I’m not surprised she has some marks on her. She was crawling in the bookshelf. She has a red spot on her arm. And I’m not surprised because she shoved herself into that bookshelf…I mean, she kicked me a couple of times…” Smith told the mother.
Knowing the school has cameras, the mother demanded to see the video of the incident. Over a week later, the school finally released the video, which showed an entirely different account than what Smith gave earlier.
The mother spoke to KCTV5 where she explained what went through her head when she saw the video for the first time. “When I saw the video it was heartbreaking, because everything she said, she sat at the same table as me and just lied about everything … she lied to me. She lied to everyone else. She was almost really convincing.”
On March 25, Smith was officially fired from her position. The District Attorney’s office is looking to determine if charges are warranted as well.