MARSHALL, Texas (KETK) – Marshall ISD teacher’s aide Sara Elizabeth Davis was arrested after being indicted for allegedly abusing a nonverbal autistic student at Price T. Young Fine Arts Academy.

According to Shane McGuire and Geoff Hoover, the attorneys representing the victim and his family, video evidence showed Davis slapping the victim in the face, grabbing his sleeve and slinging him into a desk.

An indictment from a Harrison County grand jury said that Davis caused bodily injury to a child under 14 by striking him in the face.

Davis was arrested on Aug. 30, about three years after the alleged incident. According to an indictment, Davis is accused of causing bodily injury to a child by striking them in the face.

A spokesperson for Marshall ISD said Davis’ employment was terminated days after the incident.

“The appalling abuse of our client is made even worse by the fact that not one, not two, but three other Marshall ISD employees watched as Ms. Davis hit a child and dragged him across the room.”

Shane McGuire

Attorneys said that although the incident happened on Sept. 26, 2019 investigators found that the abuse had been observed happening on multiple occasions before that date.

“We are deeply disturbed by what we have learned about the horrific experiences our client endured in his classroom – a place where he should have felt safe. Unfortunately, one of the teacher’s aides in the classroom at the time of the abuse stated she, ‘received no training to date on how to discipline the children’ and believed it could have been, ‘normal behavior for the life skills classes. Therefore, we fear that other students have been victimized.”

Geoff Hoover

Marshall ISD said that following an investigation they put Davis on administrative leave on Sept. 30, 2019.

“On September 27, 2019, prior to the current MISD Administration and Price T. Young (PTY)
Elementary Principal being in leadership within Marshall ISD, an incident allegedly occurred at Price T. Young in a classroom that concerned a physical altercation between a classroom paraprofessional and a student. After a thorough investigation, the paraprofessional was placed on Administrative Leave and her employment was terminated with MISD on September 30, 2019. The administration at that time in Marshall ISD responded quickly and decisively following the receipt of the report.

Marshall ISD is committed to providing a safe and secure educational environment for all of its students. This is a commitment that is expected of all MISD personnel, from the Central Administration, the individual campus personnel, the MISD support staff, and within all other levels of the District. Any reports of misconduct are taken very seriously.

In the three years since the incident, Price T. Young Elementary has become Price T. Young Fine Arts Academy under new leadership. The PTY Fine Arts Academy provides our district’s elementary age children with the opportunity to learn vocal and instrumental music, theater, dance and the visual arts. The core curriculum is also a focal point of each student’s education, yet the safety and security of each child will always be the most important aspect of our children’s educations in MISD. We understand that if a student doesn’t feel safe, he or she cannot reach their full potential academically.”

Marshall ISD

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