The family of a student with cerebral palsy is suing a school district after a teacher allegedly taped their daughter’s mouth shut with masking tape.
According to reports, Rosa Smith, 26, was allegedly abused by a teacher who taped her mouth shut because she,
‘wouldn’t be quiet.”
In a lawsuit filed against Washtenaw Intermediate School District, outlines ‘repetitive instances of abuse’ suffered by Smith from a teacher and two teachers aides.
Allegedly, Smith endured physical, emotional and psychological harm at the hands of the defendants, who spilled scalding hot coffee on her, locked her in the bathroom for extended periods of time and slapped her across the face, according to the allegations in the lawsuit.
Furthermore, Smith’s impairments make her unable to communicate verbally as well as physical impairments, including the inability to move her hands and arms.
Reportedly, the teacher, who has been identified as Nesa Johnson allegedly texted Smith’s mother a photo of the woman with her mouth taped saying
‘Help. She won’t be quiet!!!!’
Smiths’ family attorney, Jonathan Marko, spoke at a press conference saying these actions were ‘no accident’ and abuse was clearly involved.
“These weren’t accidents, and there was abuse going on. Taping a special-needs student’s mouth shut is appalling in-and-of-itself, but was especially torturous for Rosa, who is physically unable to remove the tape, has trouble breathing and clearing her throat, and breathes out of her mouth.”
Marko continued saying the defendants in the case blamed Smith for her own bruises and being too loud.
“They blamed Rosa for scalding hot coffee being poured on her. They blamed Rosa for coming home with bruises on her. They even blamed Rosa for being too loud, and that’s why they had to gag and bound her,” Marko said
The lawsuit also claims staff members
‘intentionally over-medicated Rosa to mollify, pacify and sedate her instead of providing the educational services to which she had a federal right.’
The allegations of abuse go as far back as 2004. The school district says they have taken remedial action after conducting an investigation.
Disturbing images from the case.
Photo: 1 of 11