DA declines to file charges against Ninnekah Principal
By Jason Clarke
The Express Star, April 10, 2004

District Attorney Gene Christian said that the State will not be filing charges against Ninnekah High School Principal David Pitts for leaving bruises when he spanked a female student.

Christian said that the March 26 spanking did not rise to the level of being criminal.

Christian also noted that the alleged handcuffing incident occurred in March of 2003 and that the handcuffing was not performed by Pitts. Christian said that he has discussed the handcuffing issue with all of the parties, and it has been agreed that it is a civil matter.

The investigation into the spanking began when Ninnekah Police Chief Scott Miller received a page asking him to contact the student’s doctor, Dr. Michael Hunt of the Five Oaks Medical Group. According to the report, Hunt told the officer that he had just examined a student who was experiencing swelling and bruising as the result of being paddled. Chief Miller then met with the student’s parents. According to the report, the parents said they had not signed a corporal punishment release for the school, but had consented to allowing two swats as punishment for a recent incident.

In the report, the student told Miller that she actually received three swats. The extra swat, she said she was told, was for not completing the rest of her punishment in the agreed upon timeframe. According to the report, Pitts would not consent to give an interview to the police without his attorney present. The report was turned over to the District Attorney’s Office before that interview could be obtained.

The parents of the student have filed a civil suit against Pitts and teacher Connie Huseman individually, as well as a tort claim against the school district.

The parents were also granted a temporary injunction by District Judge Richard Van Dyck, prohibiting further corporal punishment to the student and prohibiting Pitts from preventing the student from transferring to another District.

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