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Teacher Sues Westchester School District Following Attack

Irvington Middle School.
Irvington Middle School. Photo Credit: Contributed

WESTCHESTER COUNTY, N.Y. - An Irvington Middle School teacher is suing the school district for the “personal and psychological injuries” she suffered during an attack from a student, according to a lawsuit that’s been filed at State Supreme Court in White Plains.

Clarice Martin, a special education teacher, alleges that she suffered “grievous and permanent injuries,” following an incident on March 16 when she said in the lawsuit that she was struck in the head by a student known to have violent tendencies with a closed fist.

Martin alleges in the lawsuit that her injuries include a concussion, post-concussion syndrome, adjustment disorder with depression and anxiety, post-traumatic vision syndrome, injuries to her head, neck, shoulders, vertigo, nausea, headache, impaired sight, sleeping, balance and walking issues, fatigue, noise and light sensitivity, inability to concentrate, speech impairment, memory loss, nightmares, cervical muscle strain, pain, numbness and tingling.

In the lawsuit, it is alleged that "the defendants were negligent, careless and reckless to remove the (student) from the Irvington School District due to his documented violent behavior. They failed to prevent (the student) from striking Martin with a closed fist upon the top of her head, driving her head down to her spine, causing grievous injuries."

Martin also alleges that she has suffered a loss of income and potential retirement benefits. In the lawsuit, she claims that there had been prior notice of violent behavior from the student and that the school district is culpable for the incident.

Martin's husband, Douglas Richard, is also seeking damages. The suit says Richard has been forced to be his wife's caregiver, impacting his career, and has been denied Martin's "support, consortium and companionship" since the incident.

The lawsuit also cites middle school principal David Sottile and Scott Palermo, the district’s director of pupil personnel services.

The student, who is a minor, was not named directly in the lawsuit.

The complete complaint filed with the Westchester County Clerk earlier this week can be read here.

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