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Mother charged with teacher abuse after dispute over COVID-19 policy

Crime Watch

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IDAHO FALLS — A local mother faces jail time after she reportedly went into a school and yelled at a teacher over COVID-19 policies.

A school resource officer at Rocky Mountain Middle School was called to a classroom on Oct. 7 after the mother of a student had an outburst.

The Bonneville County Sheriff’s deputy encountered the mother, who was accompanied by three boys and was not wearing a visitor’s pass. The woman told the deputy a teacher violated her son’s rights and she was unenrolling him from the school, according to the deputy’s report.

A teacher then came down the hallway and the mother became more agitated, according to reports. The deputy told the mother they could go to the office to talk about the situation, and she continued to argue about their freedoms. The mother said the deputy was not doing anything to protect her and refused to go into the office but agreed to go outside.

“(The mother) then began to tell that she had wrote (sic) a letter to all the teacher (sic) and informed them that her son would not be wearing a mask,” the deputy’s report reads. “She said that on Tuesday during second hour (the teacher) segregated her son into a corner, would not allow him to call home and wouldn’t let him participate in class.”

The mother said she wanted to let the teacher know her actions would result in a lawsuit. The mother said she went to the doorway of the classroom so her son could get a signature from the teacher to be removed from the school. She also said she told the teacher “in a calm manner” what she did was wrong, and the teacher became irate first.

After arguing with the deputy, the mother ultimately left the school.

Deputies spoke with the teacher, who was in tears and needed to leave school to seek medical attention because of the incident.

A few days later, the teacher told investigations she had been sitting at her desk while students worked on an assignment when there was a knock at the door. The student walked in, handed her the checkout sheet and the mother came into the classroom and began yelling about COVID.

“This is not the time or place to talk about this,” the teacher said, according to court documents. “If you want to talk about it, we can go down to the office. You need to leave.”

The teacher said the mother kept yelling so the teacher pressed a button to call the office. Another teacher came to help and told the mother they needed to take the argument in the hall.

“All of these kids need to know what kind of teachers they have,” the mother responded.

The accusations towards the teacher continued, but the mother eventually left the classroom. As she walked down the hall, she reportedly threatened to sue the teacher, take her job, and take her livelihood and life by sending her to prison.

The teacher explained the student was socially distanced from other students because he was not wearing a mask, which was school policy at the time.

The mother pleaded not guilty Wednesday to misdemeanor abuse of a teacher and misdemeanor providing a false identity to law enforcement. EastIdahoNews.com is not identifying the woman as she is charged with misdemeanors. A trial date has not yet been scheduled.

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