Baker Heights Librarian charged with cruelty
POSTED: Thursday, October 27, 2011 - 3:04pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, November 2, 2011 - 4:23pm
BAKER, LA (NBC33) — THIS IS AN NBC33 NEWS UPDATE - According to reports, The School Board has appoved a 5 day suspension on Librarian Maxine Gray at Baker Heights Elementary.
Baker Heights Librarian Maxine Gray is charged with cruelty to a juvenile after police say she choked a 9-year-old boy.
According to the police report, Gray was the only teacher in the room when the boy began acting out, refusing to sit down. By the time another teacher walked in, the boy was hysterical, accusing Gray of holding him still with one hand and squeezing his neck with the other. A teacher who walked in on the act says the boy was his way back to his seat when the librarian grabbed him by the neck again, yelling at him and pushing him repeatedly until he was in the hall. That teacher told police she had to act as a physical barrier between the boy and Gray. Gray denies the charges.
All this happened nearly two months ago, on Sept 1, 2011. Police were only told about the crime when the boy's mother called them saying the school system wasn't acting fast enough. Baker Police Chief Mike Knapps says the school system didn't report the case earlier because the School Board has to hear testimony before a committee before taking action, and those hearings take a long time to set up.
But the boy's mother told police she was concerned about her son's safety and the other Baker Heights students, with Gray still working at the school. The mother eventually pressed charges herself, saying she couldn't put those kids safety in jeopardy any longer.
This is the second teacher in Baker charged with cruelty to a juveline in just over a week. Back on October 19th, Bakerfield Elementary School teacher Mildred Russ was also charged with cruelty to a juvenile after she reportedly choked and dragged the student on the playground during recess.