A Prince George’s County school teacher was recently assaulted by a student after he allegedly made a “racially insensitive” comment. According to Daily Mail, the incident took place on Jan. 29 at Forestville High School in Maryland. Although the school reportedly refused to identify the teacher, students have taken to social media identifying the teacher as James Hemmen.
Apparently, the student was quite offended by a comment the teacher made. So, he hauled off and viciously punched the teacher. Although the school district insists the teacher suffered minor injuries, photo obtained by News-4 shows otherwise.
The teacher was reportedly “left bloodied” following the incident. But, unfortunately, the Prince George’s County school system refuses to divulge any information about the teacher’s remarks due to privacy restrictions. Although the school is adamant about not repeating the alleged comment, a number of parents commented on what they heard about the incident. Based on what they’d heard, they actually understood why the student found the teacher’s comments offensive. However, the parents did not state that the students actions were justifiable.
“If the comment was made that I was told was made, I can understand the pain and the anger in that student,” parent Cynthia Leslie said.
On Tuesday, Feb. 4, the school district released a statement in regards to the incident.
“On January 29, a misinterpretation of a comment in a classroom at Forestville High School resulted in an assault against a teacher. The teacher was treated for injuries at a local medical facility and released. School administrators and security staff are working together to investigate the incident. Prince George’s County Public Schools (PGCPS) is committed to ensuring a safe and supportive environment in all schools. A letter was sent home to all Forestville parents and guardians to inform them of the incident and encourage them to reinforce with their students the importance of conducting themselves in a safe, responsible manner and to seek assistance if they need help resolving conflicts.”
The incident has sparked an interesting debate on several news outlets, as some have actually defended the student’s actions and feel the teacher conducted himself poorly. Many readers argued that as an adult, the alleged “racially insensitive” comment was an example of poor professionalism on the teacher’s part. However, there were others who feel the student’s actions should not be justified because words shouldn’t give anyone an excuse to assault someone.
Surprisingly, a number of readers even stated that they couldn’t decide whether the student’s actions were justifiable because the teacher’s remarks have not been released. But, others expressed the teacher’s words don’t even matter, because the student was wrong regardless.
Here are some of the comments.
“It’s about time somebody got punched in their yap for running their mouth all reckless. Now, he can save his apologizes. Good job young man!”
“So, you don’t even know what was said but you’re gonna put your stamp of approval on an out of control kid? Sometimes you need to ask, ‘Am I part of the solution or the problem?’ ”
“Doesn’t matter what the teacher said. That’s assault plain & simple. If you’re too immature to withstand offense and you violently assault someone, you need to be in jail. Anyone who feels they have a right to do that to someone for any reason other than self defense is too dangerous to be left with the rest of us.”
“This teacher should insist that charges be filed.”
According to the Grio, school officials have no plans of heightening security, as the incident was reportedly isolated. It has also been reported that student will be reprimanded for his actions. However, it has not been confirmed if he will face criminal charges for the assault.
Do you think the student should face criminal charges for punching the teacher? Share your thoughts.
[Image via News4]