Teachers Sue After Being Shot 'Execution-Style' in Shooter Drill

They say deputies mocked them after injuring them with plastic pellets
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Aug 25, 2020 5:20 PM CDT
Teachers Injured in Active-Shooter Drill File Lawsuit
Members of the Fountain Police Department take part in an Active Shooter Response Training exercise at Fountain Middle School in Fountain, Colo.   (Dougal Brownlie/The Gazette via AP, File)

Teachers who say they were left physically and emotionally scarred by an active-shooter drill at an Indiana elementary school last year are suing the sheriff's department responsible. The Meadowlawn Elementary School teachers say four White House County Sheriff's deputies subjected them to "verbal threats, expletives, and screaming," and shot them "execution-style" at point-blank range with plastic pellets after ordering them to face a wall and kneel, the Indianapolis Star reports. One first-grade teacher was later diagnosed with PTSD. The lawsuit says the teachers were shot with pellets during multiple exercises, causing injuries that took days or weeks to heal and left at least one teacher with permanent scars. The sheriff's department says it no longer fires airsoft guns at teachers during shooter drills.

The federal lawsuit says teachers arrived at the school in January last year expected a normal professional development day and did not sign any waiver consenting to the drill, WRTV reports. "The teachers displayed obvious signs of anguish and physical pain, but were humiliated to find the law enforcement officers joking and laughing at them," the complaint states. "The terrifying and inexplicable experience left the teachers with lasting physical and emotional injuries." The eight teachers suing the sheriff's department are being represented by the Indiana State Teachers Association. "We do not believe that a school or trainer should conduct any kind of active shooter training drill that includes the firing of any type of projectile at an employee or a student," says Keith Gambill, ISTA president.

(More teachers stories.)

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