Caldwell School Therapist Accused of Child Battery
A six year-old, nonverbal autistic boy was a victim of physical abuse by his speech therapist according to a Tort Claim filed today with the Idaho Secretary of State.
The child, who is not named because of his age, was in speech therapy when Lisa Carriere, his speech therapist and employee of Vallivue School District, slapped him across the face.
Other school staff, present in the classroom at the time of the battery, heard the slap and observed Ms. Carriere leave the room immediately after.
When staff saw the boy was acting strange and guarding his face, they examined him and discovered and photographed a red hand-imprint where he had been struck.
The blow was strong enough to cause redness and swelling on the boy’s face, loosen one of his teeth and leave an abrasion inside of his mouth.
Staff informed the principal of West Canyon Elementary, Cindy Dodd, about the incident. The witnesses told Principal Dodd of they believed Ms. Carriere had intentionally hit the boy.
Nothing was done to separate the child victim from Ms. Carriere when she returned to the classroom in an apparent attempt to assess the injury she caused.
Ms. Carriere later admitted to hitting the boy, but claimed he became aggressive and was going to charge her. She claimed she feared for her life.
The six-year old boy is four feet tall and weighs 66 pounds.
The school principal did not immediately contact the boy’s parents. She also did not contact the police, in violation of Vallivue School District policy directing school personnel to immediately report allegations of child abuse to law enforcement.
The family is suing for damages, a public apology from defendants as well as other appropriate remedies.
The child victim is being represented Pro Bono by Matthew C. Andrew, an attorney with Skaug Law PC in Nampa.