Do you think handcuffs were necessary to restrain this 7 year old or did they over-react?
http://blogs.lotterypost.com/truesee...ed-by-cops.htmSpecial-education student Joseph Anderson, 7, has been 'really traumatized' since he was put in handcuffs at his Maspeth, Queens, school, says his mother, Jessica Anderson.
Cops handcuffed a 7-year-old at a Queens school after he became upset while decorating an Easter egg, his mom said.
Special-education student Joseph Anderson, a first-grader at Public School 153 in Maspeth, was taken to Elmhurst Hospital Center in metal cuffs, even though his mother told school officials she was on her way to pick him up, mom Jessica Anderson said.
"He was crying and saying, 'I want Mommy,'" Anderson said. "Why handcuff him? Why get the cops involved? He's only 7."
The little boy has begun wetting himself in the middle of the day and throwing up since the April 13 incident, his distraught mom said.
"If he hears an ambulance, he runs under the bed and screams, 'They're going to get me,'" said the single mom. "He's really traumatized. I don't let him watch the news anymore, because if he sees cops, he cries."
City Education Department officials said school staff took the drastic step to protect the boy and his classmates.
"The school tried to defuse the situation and then called for outside assistance when there was a concern the child would harm himself or others," department spokeswoman Marge Feinberg said.
Anderson said the school called her about 12:30 p.m. to tell her Joseph - who has attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, delayed speech and emotional problems - was not having a good day, and she said she would pick him up.
Turns out, things were far worse than she imagined. The boy told her he became upset because the color on the egg he was painting didn't look the way he wanted, and staffers threatened to send him to the hospital if he didn't calm down.
Scared, the boy then jumped up on the table and said, "I just want my mommy," his mother said.
Anderson didn't get there fast enough. She left her job in Manhattan and arrived at the Maspeth school at 1:45 p.m., but her son was already gone. She didn't find out about the handcuffs until she arrived at the hospital, and a nurse told her how upset her son had been.
"I was crying. I broke down," she said. "They know that my son is special ed. It's like they're trying to get rid of him, and it worked because I'm not sending him back there."
The NYPD defended cuffing the kid, saying in a statement that he was "acting in a threatening manner." A source also said he was waving scissors.
"He was a danger to himself and others in the classroom," a spokesman said. "He started spitting and cursing at the officers. The handcuffs were used to restrain the child because of his behavior. He was a danger to himself."
This is the third time the school has sent Joseph to the hospital for a psychiatric evaluation. The school suspended the boy for two weeks.
Advocates say Joseph's trauma is not an isolated incident.
"I've seen far too many cases of kids this young handcuffed and thrown into ambulances for behavior at school," said Kim Sweet of Advocates for Children. "Just imagine being a little kid and having people come, clamp your hands behind your back and throw you in an ambulance."
The Daily News has reported several cases of handcuffing young children, including a 12-year-old Queens girl cuffed last year for doodling on her desk and a 5-year-old who was cuffed in 2008 for misbehaving in his kindergarten class.
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I feel bad for the mom, but I don't think anyone waving scissors and threatening people is immune from being handled in whatever way the cops decide to diffuse the situation with. I'm sorry, if my kid was trying to hurt himself or other people and actually was able to do it because the cops were scared to handcuff, tase, or restrain in any way my child, I'd be twice as upset as if they did what they needed to do to keep people safe.
I'd rather a child be handcuffed than a cop, teacher, other children or that child get hurt.
eta- Is it common for a special ed teacher to threaten the hospital with an upset child?
Just from the information we have, that it took over an hour for the mother to arrive, that scissors were waved around, and that the kid was so out of control that cops were called. I would think that the handcuffs were maybe needed. If he was out of control and being put in an ambulance, there are things in an ambulance that are easily within reach that the child could have grabbed and used as a weapon if that was his frame of mind.
Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)
Perhaps. Restraints are oftentimes to everyones benefit in the case of someone who poses an immediate threat to themselves or others. Pretty impossible to say without being there. I tend to be grateful for those who are doing jobs that I don't want to do (i.e tame out of control scissor (or gun) wielding people), so I am generally slow to second guess their reactions when under duress. They have a lot more training and experience than I do, I would simply be Monday morning Quarterbacking.
Last edited by Potter75; 04-21-2011 at 09:14 PM.
Without being there it is impossible to say.
Very sad for that little boy though to go through that.
As long as the district's protocol was followed I don't see the problem. I had a 7 y.o. student that was totally out of control and when he ran out of the classroom, threw a rock through the window, and it hit my Para in the head the school absolutely called the police. Unfortunately his father got there before the police did and took him home.
I just feel as if it could have been handled better. I agree that there was violence that had to be dealt with, but they couldn't have held him down or strapped him to a gurney? Handcuffs seems extreme to a child that already has emotional issues. And now, if the Mother is telling the truth, the child is dealing with extreme issues concerning the incident.
And whoever mentioned tasing? Really? I would be downright p!ssed if some dink tased my 7 year old. There are far better methods.
Seriously? I find it hard to believe that it was neccessary to use handcuffs on a 7 yr old!! Two adults could easily restrain him until the mom got there. I don't understand why it had to happen this way. If he was a danger to others in the classroom (and himself), they could've taken him to the principle's office or another contained area, until his mom got there. Again, he's a 7 yr old with scissors! Not a 17 with a gun!! Wow!
It really sounds to me that this school either didnt know how or wasnt equiped to deal with this child. This was not the first time they sent him to the hospital so they obviously felt that he needed more help than they could give him in that moment.
Mom to Arianna (5), Conner (3) and Trent (my baby)