BY Jack Davis, The Western JournalFebruary 25, 2023
1 year ago

'Mental Health Advocate' Jumps to Defense of 270-Pound Student Accused of Beating Teacher's Aide Unconscious: 'He Is Not a Threat!'

In the aftermath of the release of a video that shows a brutal attack on a teacher’s aide, one woman said law enforcement is mischaracterizing what took place.

The aide had confiscated the student’s Nintendo Switch game console, allegedly prompting the 270-pound, 6-foot-6-inch, special-needs student to attack.

The incident took place at Matanzas High School in Palm Coast, Florida, according to a Facebook post from the Flagler County Sheriff’s Office.

The student has been charged with felony aggravated battery with bodily harm. The aide, who initially was knocked unconscious, was hospitalized but has since been released. No names have been released.

Sue Urban of Florida has publicly taken issue with the sheriff’s office. Urban told the Daily Mail her son, Nicholas, had attended the school where the incident happened, and said he later took his own life. She said she knows from experience that the teen should not be treated as a run-of-the-mill criminal.

“This is not this child's fault. He is not a threat. This is a mental health issue. This is a problem with our system, it is broken,” she said in a Facebook Live video, according to the Daily Mail.

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“That post needs to be removed from the Flagler County Sheriff's website immediately.”

Urban said she became a mental health advocate after her son’s death.

“That child has mental health issues. He is just that, a child,” she said, adding she is, “sick of these kids being labeled as a threat.”

Urban said the teen does not belong in jail.

“That child should not have been transported to jail, he should have been transported to a mental health facility. Please stop labeling this child as a monster. Yes, his size is a big factor, [but] he did not know he was doing wrong,” she said.

Urban said devices can often be the only thing things that prevent eruptions like the one seen on video.

“These kids are given extra attention in those classes. They are given leeway to have these devices, so when they do lose their tempers or if they do get into that mental space, that they can have those Switches or phones or their comfort devices, [so] that they can calm down,” she said.

Urban said the school’s security to protect staff is flawed.

“That teacher - that paraprofessional - should have never been left alone in a situation where she could have been attacked,” she said.

Urban said a stepson of hers is in the same wing of the school as the student who attacked the aide.

That wing, she said, is for students who are “not in the general population of the high school.”

“This is not just a thug. People need to be educated on children that have ESE [Exceptional Student Education]. They should also be educated on impulsive aggression behavior, and that most times these children do not understand the consequences of the behavior,” she said.

Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly called the video of the incident “shocking," according to WESH-TV.

"This could have been a homicide," Staly said, "When you push people down like that, they hit their head, you never know the outcome."

This article appeared originally on The Western Journal.

Written by: Jack Davis, The Western Journal

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