OVERTON, Texas (KETK) — A substitute teacher at Overton ISD said she was watching over the in-school suspension students on Tuesday when she said the unthinkable happened on a trip out of the classroom.
“I look over and the other student was directly behind the resource officer,” said Candy Russell, substitute teacher and parent at Overton ISD.
Russel claims at that moment the 11-year-old reached for the school police officer’s gun. Without thinking, she said she yelled his name and ran towards him. Immediately, she said a report was made to the administration.
“I said, ‘I need you to go in the office and rewind the video a minute or two and see what just happened.’ I couldn’t even spit the words out of my mouth,” said Russell.
She said the resource officer was standing in the hallway when the incident happened.
“He never looked back, he never was aware that the boy was behind him and that he had reached for his gun,” said Russell.
As she made her way back to her classroom, Russell said the split-second moment still haunted her.
“Everything could have changed for all of us, not me, just as a substitute, but as a parent,” said Russell.
The student was pulled from ISS, but returned to class the same day, she said.
“He blew it off. It was nothing to him. ‘I’m used to trouble, I don’t care,’ he said, ‘What are they going to do? Suspend me? We’ve got three days of school left,'” said Russell.
The fifth-grade student was pulled from the classroom a second time to speak with the Overton Police Chief, who told KETK News that he has no comment on the incident.
“After school was over and I turned in my keys, she told me they saw it on video, ‘what perfect timing, and thank you,'” Russell said.
This substitute teacher believes more should have been done about the situation and says her life will forever be changed.
“I will not be returning subbing, I can’t,” said Russell.
KETK News spoke to Overton ISD Superintendent Larry Calhoun over the phone, he said the student never reached for the gun or touched the gun.
On Wednesday night, Overton ISD took to Facebook to make a statement:
“In response to the news story aired by KETK, I feel compelled to share this with our Overton ISD Stakeholders. There was an incident reported on Tuesday morning. An investigation which involved OISD Administration, our SRO and the Overton Police Chief was completed promptly. It is not appropriate to share the details of that investigation or any resulting student discipline. However, we want to assure our parents, students and staff that at no time was a student in possession of a firearm, nor did a student ever physically touch a firearm. The safety of our students and staff is always a priority. OISD students and staff were never in any danger, and the incident has been addressed.”Overton ISD