Substitute teacher facing charges after viral video of her attacking special needs student
A substitute teacher in Kyle, Tex., was arrested last week for a brutal attack on a high school student that was caught on tape and has since gone viral. Now school officials confirm she has been fired.
According to The Daily Mail, last Friday, Tiffani Shadell Lankford was freed on $10,000 bond. Lankford was accused of beating up a teen at Lehman High School and has been charged with a felony, aggravated assault.
“We are shocked and disgusted after seeing the abuse and excessive force used in this teacher’s attempt to discipline a special needs child,” the family’s attorney Paul Batrice told Austin Tex., station KVUE.
“There is no excuse for this type of behavior. Given this teacher’s alleged criminal history of domestic violence and the video footage that has shaken our community, we have started an investigation into this teacher and Hays CISD in the hopes of ensuring justice for this family and so that no Texas student ever endures such extreme behavior again.”
Cell phone footage of the incident which took place in a foreign-language class quickly went viral. The disturbing clips show Lankford punching the student multiple times, gripping her up from her desk and stomping on her head. A second video appeared to show the student hitting the teacher as she grabbed her from her seat.
“All parents, myself included, should be deeply disturbed by the facts surrounding this attack,” said Batrice who also explained the girl – who has a 504 Education Plan because of her disability – has suffered major injuries after the attack.
The superintendent of Hays Consolidated Independent School District said Lankford passed a background check despite having a past criminal record.
“As a Hays CISD family, when one of our schools and students is hurting, we all hurt. You may have already seen stories on the news tonight, or the video on social media, about a horrible incident that occurred late this afternoon at Lehman High School,” read a statement from the Hays Consolidated Independent School District.
“It was a traumatic event for the student, her classmates, and the teachers and staff at Lehman High School. Let us all keep the Lobos in our hearts this weekend. I know we all wish our student and her family well as she recovers from this assault.”
In addition to firing the substitute teacher, the district has also reported the incident to the Texas Education Agency. If convicted, Lankford could face 2 to 20 years behind bars.