When a fourteen-year-old girl refused to go in the pool during gym class in August 2014 at Edison High School in Stockton, CA, her physical education teacher reacted in a disturbing way. The girl, named Sandra Garcia, did not want to get in the pool because she had gotten her hair done earlier in the day for an event she was attending that night. When Garcia did not comply with the PE teacher’s requests to get in the pool, the teacher used physical force to try to drag her into the water.
The PE teacher, Denny Peterson, has been with the school district for ten years, and there have been no previous complaints against him. Regardless of his decade-long clean slate with the district, what you will see him doing in this video is terrifying. He grabs the young girl and proceeds to drag her across the floor as her legs and arms flail. What’s even worse is that he ignores her cries as she says “Stop! My top is falling down!”and struggles to keep herself covered as he pulls her toward the water. Another student saw the altercation and began filming. When Peterson would not let up, other students tried to intervene to help Garcia, even throwing water at Peterson.
Garcia’s attorney, Gilbert Somera, says that Garcia was left with bruises and scratches after the struggle. As he points out in the video, Peterson’s behavior is absolutely unacceptable, stating that “no means no,” and that a grown man should never put his hands on a child like this.
Peterson was charged with a misdemeanor count of corporal injury to a child and subsequently placed on administrative leave.
were horrified to see what Peterson did to Garcia. It’s hard to imagine what could have possibly been running through this man’s mind, as it is hard to fathom any situation in which a teacher could possibly justify using physical force to make a child comply with instructions.What do you think of what happened between Peterson and Garcia? Let us know in the comments below.