LR5 teacher aide charged with cruelty to children after duct-taping student to chair, police say
COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - A former Lexington Richland school district five teacher aide is out on bond tonight after police say she taped a 4-year-old student to a chair.
Deputies with the Lexington county sheriff’s department arrested 25-year-old Olivia Murray was arrested Wednesday and charged her with cruelty to children.
WIS was inside the courtroom during her bond hearing, but per the judge’s order, they were not allowed to film Murray.
Murray was granted a $1,087 surety bond. The mother of the 4-year-old was at that hearing. Our Ashley jones spoke with her following that hearing.
Akira Johnson says she got a call Wednesday afternoon from the principal at Seven Oaks Elementary School. She was told another staff member walking by the classroom saw her child duct taped to a chair and reported it to the principal.
“I literally felt like somebody shot me and took all the wind out of my body. It was the worst experience,” said 4-year-old Jason Johnson’s mother.
That’s how Akira Johnson felt rushing to the Seven Oaks Elementary school Wednesday morning after she got a call that her 4-year-old son was duct taped to a chair by an adult.
25-year-old Olivia Murray. Murray is a 4K teacher’s assistant at the school.
“Green duct tape,” said Johnson as she described what investigators found.
“They also found duct tape marks on the chair. She taped him one time and then once he removed, she made him put it back on and then she reinforced it with more duct tape,” she continued.
Once Johnson got word of what happened. She called the police. Deputies arrested Murray at her home that same night. She’s been charged with cruelty to children by torture, but Johnson believes other staff at Seven Oaks should be held accountable too.
“From what I’m hearing there were two teachers in the classroom. One left came back and found my son taped to a chair. Evidently, they thought it was a good idea to put him down for a nap after that,” said Johnson.
Ashley Jones: Detectives say Murray told them; the 4-year-old was sent to the back of the classroom for being disruptive. Johnson believes Murray duct-taped her son to a chair out of retaliation. She says her seven-year-old daughter attends the same school and Murray would often tell her that her little brother was bad.
Johnson says, “She also left a note in his folder the day of the incident, which I don’t understand, she must start her day off angry, but she left a note saying, you need to teach him how to sit still in a chair.”
Murray is expected to return to court on March 28th, and Johnson hopes for more than just a slap on the wrist.
“Jail time. I want her to get some jail time. I don’t want her around anyone else’s kids,” she said.
Johnson says her son was humiliated in front of his classmates, that he’s now traumatized and now she’s questioning whether to send him back to this school. Murray has since been fired.
Jones also reached out to the district for a response. They said in a statement:
An employee of School District Five of Lexington & Richland Counties was arrested on March 1, 2023, based on her alleged conduct toward a student earlier that day. At School District Five, we work hard to ensure a safe learning environment at our schools and work closely with law enforcement to make safety our top priority. Due to the alleged conduct, the individual is no longer employed with the district, and we are cooperating with law enforcement in their investigation. Because of the ongoing investigation, School District Five will have no further comment at this time
A teacher’s aide is charged with cruelty to children after she allegedly taped a student’s legs in an elementary school.
Investigators with the Lexington County Sheriff’s Office said Olivia Michelle Murray, 25, was arrested at her home on Wednesday, March 1.
A warrant said Murray was working as a teacher’s aide at Seven Oaks Elementary School 4K. The incident report said she duct-taped a student’s legs to a chair. The warrant also stated the incident happened after the teacher stepped away from the classroom for a few moments, during which Murray taped the child’s legs.
Sheriff Jay Koon said, “Murray told detectives the student had been moved to the back of the classroom for being disruptive and not listening.”
The district issued a statement in response to the arrest,
“An employee of School District Five of Lexington & Richland Counties was arrested on March 1, 2023, based on her alleged conduct toward a student earlier that day. At School District Five, we work hard to ensure a safe learning environment at our schools and work closely with law enforcement to make safety our top priority.”
“Due to the alleged conduct, the individual is no longer employed with the district, and we are cooperating with law enforcement in their investigation. Because of the ongoing investigation, School District Five will have no further comment at this time.”
Murray was granted a $1087 surety bond. A court date was set for March 28th.
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