Teacher who encouraged peer attack on middle schooler fired

Dru DehartIt wasn’t a “hit” hit. A Florida school teacher didn’t hire actual contract killers to “finger” a 7th-grade student at Northport School in St. Lucie County. Instead she only ordered a group of the boy’s peers to put a beatdown on him. Only.

That was in March 2013, and after a year of careful consideration, the school board officially fired the teacher, Dru Dehart. West Palm Beach NBC affiliate WPTV notes that a school surveillance video  (shown here) captured the assault on Radravious Williams. The boy’s mother, Latasha Darrisaw told reporters:

He said that they brought him in the hallway, and that they held him down, they kicked him, they stomped him, they beat him. And as he was trying to get away, they just basically like, continued to just torture him. [Dehart’s] remarks was, ‘I got my eighth grade boys on you. You’re not so tough now.’

The teacher, who was not present at last Thursday’s hearing, claims Williams threatened her. The child concedes he was disrespectful but denies he ever threatened Dehart. Other students in the class support his version of events.

Regardless of what went down, Dehart approached six students during lunch, according to the district’s investigative report, “and contaminated their memories.” Police later subsequently arrested the six juveniles who attacked Williams.

Said Dena Sisk Foman, an attorney the family has engaged to represent it in a federal civil rights lawsuit it is now bringing against the school district:

As far as we are concerned, they are victims in this too. They were manipulated and they were told to have a certain story. It is truly unbelievable what happened. A teacher ordered a hit on a child.

As for young Radravious? “It’s like a nightmare,” Latasha Darrisaw said on camera. “He’s not the same. He’s had some sleepless nights.”

As to the board’s decision, Foman’s firm released a statement noting that “we are confident that is the right decision for the children of St. Lucie County.”

Mark Wilensky, an attorney representing Drehart, said, “She wishes she would never stop teaching,” He added, “I don’t think she had any real hopes or expectations that in this setting today that was going to happen.”

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