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Mother of 7-year-old with autism recordsdata lawsuit after useful resource officer handcuffed her son in school

The metropolis of Statesville has since launched physique digicam video depicting then-Statesville Police Officer Michael Fattaleh, who served as a faculty useful resource officer on the Pressly Alternative School, responding to an occasion involving the coed. The physique digicam footage was obtained by CNN affiliate WSOC by a court docket petition.

The boy was enrolled in a day therapy program situated at Pressly Alternative School, which is affiliated with a non-profit behavioral and psychological well being supplier, as a consequence of his particular wants, in accordance with the lawsuit.

“Officers assigned to Pressly were aware that children at the day treatment program had special needs, and suffered from an array of developmental, mental health and behavioral issues, including autism,” the lawsuit says.

According to the lawsuit, on September 11, 2018, the boy turned “agitated and verbalized being stressed out,” and was subsequently dropped at the college’s “quiet room” by his trainer to attenuate stimulation and permit him to relax in a protected setting.

The lawsuit alleges that Fattaleh then abruptly entered the room, claiming to have seen the boy spit on the ground as he walked previous. Body digicam video reveals Fattaleh then forcing the boy right into a kneeling place, together with his arms pinned behind him, saying “if you spit on me, I’m going to put a hood on you.”

The lawsuit alleges that Fattaleh restrained the 7-year-old in metallic handcuffs, on the bottom, for greater than 38 minutes, at one level stating “Have you ever heard the term babysitter? I take that term literally, my friend.”

“If you, my friend, are not acquainted with the juvenile justice system, you will be very shortly,” Fattaleh might be heard saying on the video. “You ever been charged before? OK, well you’re fixing to.”

During different moments of the incident, whereas the 7-year-old is mendacity face down on the ground, together with his arms cuffed behind him, Fattaleh seems to examine on the boy’s well-being, asking “Can you breathe?” and “Are you hot? Are you warm?”

When the boy’s mom arrives, the officer tells her that her son “is going to be charged with one count of assault, maybe two,” the video reveals.

Among different issues, the lawsuit seeks to carry Fattaleh answerable for inflicting “unnecessary and wanton pain and suffering” on the boy, saying he suffered “severe and permanent psychological injuries and was forced to endure extreme pain, suffering, and emotional distress and mental anguish together with a total deprivation of his rights guaranteed him by the Constitution.”

Interim Statesville Police Chief David Onley initiated an inside affairs investigation of the incident, the Statesville Police Department mentioned in an announcement.

Onley and District Attorney Sarah Kirkman requested the North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation to hold out an unbiased probe of the matter. “There are no active investigations or criminal proceedings related to any events depicted in the video,” the police assertion says.

According to town, Fattaleh has resigned from his place and is now not working with the police division.

“The Statesville Police Department stresses its commitment to serving the community and our schools and will continue to build trust with the students, parents and staff,” the assertion added.

An legal professional for Fattaleh, Ashley Cannon, issued an announcement saying, “On September 11, 2018, he responded to a report involving a student,” and that the unbiased investigation of the matter requested by the interim police chief and the district legal professional “was completed and there are no active investigations or criminal proceedings related to the matter.”

CNN has reached out to the Iredell-Statesville Board of Education, which is known as as a defendant within the lawsuit together with Fattaleh and town of Statesville, for remark.

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