St. Cloud, Fla. - An Osceola County teacher accused of hitting a special needs student has been arrested on a child abuse charge.
Cell phone video provided to FOX 35 News shows the teacher being walked out of the school in handcuffs.
A message about the incident was sent to parents and guardians Friday.
“As I have always maintained open communication with our school community, I feel it is important to inform you of a difficult situation involving our school. The Osceola County Sheriff’s Office arrested one of our teachers yesterday for one count of child abuse regarding her handling of a student,” said Principal Sandra Davenport in a recorded message.
According to an arrest report, 36-year-old Crystal Bunn was questioned Thursday. The report states that Bunn told investigators she saw the 6-year-old student hit another child with a Barbie doll. She reprimanded him, then deputies say she admitted that she intentionally hit the boy in the head while they were both holding onto the doll. He started crying.
Investigators say the boy had a small laceration under his eye and a red mark across his eyebrow.
The boy’s mother says she’s disgusted.
She declined an on-camera interview with FOX 35 and didn't want us to share her name but says her son is severely disabled and can’t defend himself or talk and did nothing to deserve this.
A statement from district officials says, “The Osceola School District takes matters of student safety very seriously. We are unable to comment on this incident as it is a police matter.”
The district says Bunn has been with the district since 2011. She’s been reassigned out of the school and is not working with children pending the outcome of the case.
We were unable to reach her for a comment.