'Stop resisting!' US teacher handcuffed and arrested after questioning pay

Vermilion Parish
From left Vermilion Parish Superintendent Jerome Puyau and School Board President Anthony Fontana

A teacher in Vermilion Parish, Louisiana, was escorted out of a school board meeting by a city marshal, handcuffed and arrested after speaking out against a pay raise for the district's superintendent.

According to local news station KATC, Deyshia Hargrave, an English language arts teacher at Rene Rost Middle Schools, asked a couple of questions - which board officials answered - during the public-comment only portion of the meeting. After being called on a second time, when Hargrave tried, once again, to ask a question, she was told to leave. After posing another question, an Abbeville city marshal on duty at the meeting escorted Hargrave out of the meeting. She could be heard in a video taken of the incident yelling that the officer pushed her to the ground and she was told by the officer to "stop resisting". The board does not plan to press charges against the teacher.

Board members complained that the meeting was to discuss the superintendent's contract, not teacher pay. "We work very hard, with very little, to maintain the salaries we have". According to news site Education Week, "a survey of more than 1,800 public and private school teachers conducted in the 2015-16 school year" showed that the average American educator had to spend $600 of their own money in order to provide adequate school supplies for their students.

It was then that the skirmished happened, in what appeared to be a hallway, while the cameras rolled. Handcuffs were later placed on Hargrave in the hallway, as she was removed from the building.

KATC, of Lafayette, had a crew at the meeting and was videotaping it, along with another person who shot video, The Times-Picayune reported.

Arrest records indicate that Hargrave was booked into the city jail for "remaining after being forbidden" and "resisting an officer", reported KATC, which added that the cooperation of the school system was not required for an arrest and the officer could apprehend her on his complaint.

"What are you doing?" she is heard exclaiming in the video, as she was led away to a cruiser outside.

Requests for comment from Hargrave and Puyau were not immediately returned Tuesday afternoon.

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