(See update at the end of this post)
The Houston Independent School District has accused a Jane Long Academy history teacher of choking a student in class, according to a statement the district sent out this afternoon.
HISD began investigating Scott Christopher Matthews -- who, according to the school's website, teaches seventh grade Texas history and eighth grade American history -- after an incident in the classroom last Thursday. "Matthews was accused last Thursday of choking a student in his classroom," according to a statement from the district. "School administrators responded immediately, aiding the student, removing the teacher from the classroom and notifying HISD Police and Child Protective Services." District officials did not disclose the age of that student.
According to the district, HISD police recently presented their findings to the Harris County District Attorney's Office, which accepted charges of third-degree felony injury to a child and secured an arrest warrant. The district says the teacher has been reassigned to off-campus, non-classroom duties pending the outcome of a criminal investigation.
The district states that Matthews "is expected to soon be taken into custody." His charges weren't yet posted with the Harris County District Clerk as of late Tuesday afternoon. We'll update this post when we learn more about the charges against Matthews.
Updated 1/14/15 at 11:30 a.m.:
A criminal complaint filed against Matthews yesterday alleges the teacher wrapped a shirt around an 11-year-old student's neck and choked him until he passed out.
The student told an HISD police officer that he had been standing outside Matthews' class last Thursday and that when he went back inside the classroom, "Mr. Matthews got the complainant's shirt and put it around the complainants neck," according to court documents.
The student "stated that he started to feel dizzy, and when he opened his eyes, he was laying on the floor." According to the criminal complaint, Matthews told police he was "playing" with the student, and only realized there was a problem when the student collapsed to the ground.
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