With our children headed back to school, we face a series of challenges. Many of us are refiguring our work, school, and home life balance, our focus on who’s driving the kids to school, and what after-school activities are coming up. Many parents are reviewing safety plans with their children, including the routes to take to and from school and the importance of not talking with strangers.
It’s a sad reality that a darker, but necessary conversation is likely being held with our kids. A conversation about what they must do if a fellow student turns on them with violence in mind. While a conversation like this may have seemed extreme 20 years ago, it’s necessary today.
It saddens me to know children are speaking about school shootings in the same way they might speak about a hurricane or a tornado. It saddens me, but it doesn’t surprise me, because many schools now prepare students for these events in similar ways. We all remember fire drills where our teachers walked us out of school in orderly lines to prepare for the possibility of a fire in our schools.
Now our children are put through different drills, where they’re ordered to bar their classroom doors and hide under desks, and in closets in case one of their classmates comes in with an assault rifle and intent to kill.
What a sad reality for our young ones.
Recently an article was brought to my attention about a six-year-old child who brought a gun to school and shot his teacher.
You can read the full article by clicking the link below: Mother pleads guilty to felony child neglect after her 6-year-old son used her gun to shoot his teacher. https://wtop.com/virginia/2023/08/mother-expected-to-plead-guilty-after-her-6-year-old-son-used-her-gun-to-shoot-his-virginia-teacher/?rc_uuid=9f01fa63-4610-404c-ab75-e4d4a54b6c82
The shooting occurred last year and the case against the child’s mother is one of three, with one the teacher filed against the district for $40 million, accusing the school system of gross negligence for failing to respond to multiple warnings the child had brought a gun to school that day.
The shooting was not an accident. The six-year-old told police he intended to shoot his teacher while she sat at a reading table during a lesson. He simply stood up, shot his teacher, and then gloated, “I shot that (expletive) dead.” The teacher was hit in the hand and chest and spent two weeks in the hospital undergoing multiple surgeries. She is lucky to be alive.
The boy had previously been diagnosed with a defiance disorder and attention deficit/hyperactive disorder and had a history of stealing from his mother. He was under a care plan at the school that included a family member accompanying him to class every day. The week of the shooting was the first when a parent was not in class with him. This change had been made because he had recently started medication and was beginning to meet his goals academically.
Now his mother will serve her sentence for child neglect leading to this terrible incident. It remains to be seen what happens with the teacher’s suit against the district.
Heaven forbid you or someone you care about is ever forced to live through something like this; but if you ever find yourself in this situation, I would encourage you to seek legal counsel. The at-fault party should be held accountable for their actions and the right personal injury attorney can help make this happen.
Lastly, if you or someone you love is ever injured or killed due to a violent act or the negligence of a business or person, please reach out to my office. I’m here to help in every way I can.
Call 703-761-4343 or 301-949-1515.
Until next time, please be safe, and NEVER text while driving!
Attorney Paul Samakow