Published Friday, May 15, 2009
An indictment for cruelty to children for Jeanette Grimsley, assistant principal at Potter Street Elementary School, was no billed by the Decatur County Grand Jury when it was convened on Monday, May 4.
By no billing the indictment—a formal accusation that a person has committed a criminal offense—the Grand Jury stated it did not find cause to pursue the charge.
The Decatur County Sheriff’s Office conducted an investigation into a charge of excessive use of corporal punishment by Grimsley on a third-grade student that took place on Feb. 6. The student was paddled three times in one day and bruising was apparent from the punishment.
Sheriff Wiley Griffin said the information collected during the investigation was presented to District Attorney Joe Mulholland, and a joint decision was made to present the indictment before the Grand Jury. He said no arrest warrants were ever taken.
The matter was also investigated by the Decatur County Board of Education.
Disciplinary action taken by the board included a 10-day suspension without pay, a prohibition from using corporal punishment while an employee of the Decatur County Board of Education, a mandate to attend professional development on alternative disciplinary procedures, placement of official disciplinary documentation in Grimsley’s personnel file and a possible review of her certification status.
The board also chose to suspend the use of corporal punishment for the entire school system until policy changes can be made pertaining to the corporal punishment.
Taylor Seay can be reached by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org, or by telephone at (229) 246-2827, Ext. 113.