In Reviera Beach, A 7-year-old ran his hands along with a bulletin board Tuesday as he walked the halls of Dr. Mary McLeod Bethune Elementary school with his first-grade classmates.
A first-grade teacher, Cynthia Smith, told him not to do that.
When he didn’t listen to her, she reportedly. Slammed his head into the bulletin board, breaking the boy’s front tooth and busting his lip. Though she claims a classmate pushed the boy, surveillance-camera footage. From the Riviera Beach school shows her slamming his head, then forcefully pulling him to her classroom, Palm Beach County School District police said.
After a short time, she then is seen on camera re-stapling items on the bulletin board outside her classroom.
On Friday, the police arrested a 64-year-old teacher, Smith, on a charge of child abuse. The West Palm Beach woman got eligibility for a $3,000 surety bond that afternoon and was released from the county prison.
A message was unread and left on a telephone number listed in police records as Smith’s went off-radar on Monday.
CCTV Camera Footage Revealed The Truth
The school’s principal Katrina Granger immediately contacted district police on Thursday afternoon after she watched the surveillance footage from the hallway two days earlier.
A police officer questioned Granger and multiple students. All of whom expressed their feelings over how Smith acted with the children.
Police Questioned Several students on Smith’s Attitude
Several students told officers that Smith is mean and very rude. One student said Smith shouts at her for no possible reason. Students reported that they had witnessed Smith push other children too.
Granger said Smith, who worked at the school for 12 years, acts very angrily toward her students. The parents filed several complaints about her.
Smith’s behavior and attitude were investigated on at least four other incidents, the principal said, though the nature of those incidents was not immediately available and known.
When Smith was able to be reached by phone Monday, Granger deferred comment to the district’s communications department.
District officials did not immediately comment on questions regarding Smith’s current employment status but said she had worked multiple jobs in the district for the past 25 years.