A video of a Louisiana teacher, being forcibly removed and handcuffed by a police officer during a school board meeting after questioning why the school Superintendent was getting a raise, has gone viral.
The footage shows a woman, language arts teacher Deyshia Hargrave, speaking out against a $38,000 raise for Superintendent Jerome Puyau prior to the board’s vote approving the salary increase.
"I have a serious issue with a superintendent or any person of leadership getting any type of raise,” Hargrave said. “I feel like it’s a slap in the face to all the teachers, cafeteria workers and any other support staff we have. We work very hard, with very little, to maintain the salaries we have.”
Hargrave noted that teachers and other district staffers have gone years without raises, despite what she characterized as increasing class and improving test scores.
Footage from the Vermillion Parish School Board meeting then captures a police officer violently detaining her in a hallway.
Lafayette's KATC TV reports, that no charges will be filed against Hargrave.
Abbeville city attorney Ike Funderburk told KATC TV, "I have reviewed the video and I am not going to approve any charges against the teacher." After talking with the school board's attorney, Funderburk said the school board did not wish to pursue charges against the teacher either, according to the news station.
However, Anthony Fontana, president of the Vermilion Parish School Board, has defended Hargrave's arrest and told the station he thinks "the whole thing was a 'set up'" intended to prevent the superintendent from getting a proposed contract.
"Deyshia Hargrave's expulsion from a public meeting and subsequent arrest are unacceptable and raise serious constitutional concerns," the American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana said in an emailed news release.