Police investigate accusation of unlawful restraint at elementary school in Garland

Garland police are investigating an allegation of unlawful restraint at Shorehaven Elementary school.
Garland police are investigating an allegation of unlawful restraint at Shorehaven Elementary school. Google Maps

The staff in an elementary classroom in Garland was being investigated Friday for possible unlawful restraint of a student, according to police.

Police were investigating whether a teacher had unlawfully restrained one or more students at Shorehaven Elementary, Lt. Pedro Barineau with Garland police said.

Barineau said the teacher worked in a pre-K or kindergarten class that included children with disabilities.

The restraint used was something other than hands, Barineau said, but said he could not provide further details due to the pending investigation.

“We don’t know if criminal charges are going to be filed,” he said. “That will be communicated with the Dallas County District Attorney office in regards to criminal intent.”

Detectives were interviewing school staff and witnesses to determine if a crime was committed, Barineau said.

He added no injuries were reported to police as of Saturday afternoon.

In a statement, a Garland ISD spokeswoman said the district reported the allegations to the Garland police department.

“Whenever there is an issue that involves the safety and security of students, we take it very seriously and respond promptly,” the statement said. “There were allegations made about staff in one classroom at Shorehaven Elementary. Staff in that classroom were placed on leave while reports/allegations are being investigated.”

The mother of an 8-year-old special needs child with autism in North Texas filed a federal lawsuit against Felty Elementary School and police after he was handcuffed and held down by teachers and police two years ago.

Related stories from Fort Worth Star Telegram

Kaley Johnson is a breaking news and enterprise reporter. She majored in investigative reporting at the University of Missouri-Columbia and has a passion for bringing readers in-depth, complex stories that will impact their lives. Send your tips via email or Twitter.