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Virginia Beach father says son was slapped by substitute teacher; man faces simple assault charges

Posted at 5:20 PM, Mar 30, 2015

Virginia Beach, Va. - A Virginia Beach father is angry after he said his son was slapped by a substitute teacher.

Virginia Beach Police say Dennis Burt was arrested for on Thursday for three counts of simple assault.

NewsChannel 3 went to Burt's home to ask him about the allegations. Burt said he was instructed not to discuss the case because he was going to court over it.

Marcus George is furious.

"I got a call from the principal's office Thursday afternoon that my son had been in altercation. We're under the assumption that it was something with another child but the principal hesitantly told me a substitute teacher slapped my son in the face," George says.

He said he got a call from the principal of Salem Middle School last Thursday telling him his son was slapped by a substitute teacher.

Dennis Newell Burt

Dennis Newell Burt

“My son spilled water on accident, spilled water and for that in front of the entire class he hauled back and slap my son and his face for spilling water. It's ridiculous,” he says.

The school district would only say they are investigating after there were allegations that an employee hit a student in the arm.

“At the end of the day I'm holding that institution liable for the safety of my child,” George says.

District leaders refused to give specifics about the case but told NewsChannenl 3 when accusations like this are investigated the teacher is removed from the classroom until the investigation is complete.

"My son is traumatized. He is embarrassed to go in front of his friends as this happened in front of all of his peers. He was scared. As parents we don't raise our children that way, we have different methods of punishment instead of anything physical," George says.

George said now he wants other parents to be aware of what happened and said he’s seeking legal advice as he tries to figure out what to do next.

He said, "As a parent I'm outraged and I feel that justice needs to be served for the sake of our community, for our parents feeling safe knowing that their kids are in school getting a proper education."

George said he is worried about how this incident might affect his child.

"My son may need counseling.  My son isn't the same boy he was last week. Right now my son doesn't want to be around his friends.  My son doesn't want to go to school... This is something he doesn't deserve you should feel safe. He should feel like he's getting educated whether it's the main teacher or the substitute that he has a professional adult that is not going to harm him, now my son doesn't feel that way and I feel that something needs to happen about that immediately."