Louisiana teacher handcuffed at school board meeting after criticizing superintendent's raise

Video shows a teacher being handcuffed at a school board meeting.

— -- A teacher was handcuffed at a school board meeting in Louisiana Monday evening -- and the altercation was captured on camera by ABC affiliate KATC.

Deyshia Hargrave, an English language arts teacher at Rene A. Rost Middle School in Kaplan, was taken into custody after she was removed from the meeting, where she raised issues about Vermilion Parish School System's superintendent receiving a new three-year deal that includes a raise, KATC reports.

That's when a deputy marshal employed by the school district, according to KATC, confronted Hargrave. The marshal asked Hargrave to sit down or be removed.

Hargrave left on her own, but the dispute between the teacher and the marshal became physical outside the meeting room, video shows. The teacher is seen on video screaming on the ground and being handcuffed by the deputy marshal.

“Are you kidding me?” Hargrave is heard saying.

“Stop resisting,” the marshal replies.

"I am not, you just pushed me to the floor," Hargrave says. "Sir, hold on!”

Hargrave was arrested by the Abbeville Police Department, but Abbeville city attorney and prosecutor Ike Funderburk told KATC he will not be prosecuting Hargrave after watching the video.

But school board president Anthony Fontana defended the actions of the officer in an interview with KATC on Tuesday evening, comparing the action taken to a student being punished for unruliness.

"If a teacher has the authority to send a student that's acting up in the classroom that she can't control, out of the classroom to the principal's office. Under our policy, we have the same rules," Fontana said. "The marshal did his job."

Laurie Leblanc, a Vermilion Parish school board member, suggested that Hargrave may have been targeted because she's a woman.

“What happened here tonight, the way that females are treated in Vermilion Parish, I have never seen a man removed from this room," she was seen on KATC video after the incident.

The Louisiana Association of Educators released a statement in multiple tweets that read in part: "As an organization that advocates for the dedicated school employees of Louisiana, we firmly denounce the mistreatment of Ms. Hargrave, a loving parent and dedicated teacher serving the students of Vermilion Parish."

It continued: "It is every citizen’s right to speak up for their beliefs. Any action that infringes upon this right is unlawful and unacceptable."

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