Tindley instructor shares her side of the story following arrest
IINDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Prosecutors will not charge a Tindley Summit Academy instructor after police arrested her for battery. She says she spent days in jail despite the fact that she’s innocent. Now she’s defending herself.
“I am not a monster, not at all. I love children, this is my passion,” Tiffany Warren said.
The mother of three says she worked as an instructional assistant at Tindley Summit Academy for two years.
“I mean people that actually know me know that this is not me, but people that do not, it might be hard for me even to go out and even try to pursue what I started because my name was ruined,” Warren said.
Last week, a parent said her 6-year-old son told her the educator picked him up by the arms and kicked him in the back of his legs, when he wouldn’t sit cross-legged. Warren denies that.
“The scholar was just twirling around in a circle amongst other scholars, and the other scholars were saying, ‘Stop, stop, stop.’ So my first instinct as a teacher is to go remove the scholar,” Warren said. “I picked him up from the back and set him down on the carpet, and that was it. Continued on with my lesson, the scholar was enjoying the lesson.”
But Warren was accused of battery. A police report named Warren and said a teacher was arrested after school video showed a teacher “putting her knee into a juvenile student’s back causing pain when he wasn’t sitting correctly on the floor with the other children.”
When asked about the incident after it happened, the school district said it was made aware of an incident involving inappropriate conduct by an instructional assistant, and after reviewing the facts, the poice became involved and they terminated the employee. The district released this statement from Interim CEO Edreece Redmond at the time:
“Tindley Accelerated Schools was made aware of an incident that took place on Monday, March 11, involving inappropriate conduct by an Instructional Assistant at Tindley Summit Academy.
We were alerted this morning, Tuesday, March 12, of an incident involving the Instructional Assistant and a scholar, at which time we immediately initiated our internal school and law enforcement protocol. After an initial review of the facts surrounding the issue, we deemed it appropriate to immediately involve the police. At this time, we are cooperating with the police as they investigate the matter and will continue to do so. We would like parents to know that we have taken swift action and immediately terminated the employee involved in the issue.
Throughout this process, all appropriate procedures were followed to ensure that all scholars and staff remained safe as the situation unfolded. This incident was handled as discreetly as possible in an effort to minimize disruptions and to protect our scholars.
At Tindley, we have a zero tolerance policy for any behavior that could potentially cause harm to our scholars or staff. I am proud of the immediate action that was taken by our staff in adhering to their training and assuring that our schools remain a safe environment for all.”
The Marion County Prosecutor’s Office said charges were not filed against Warren.
“My passion was the youth, not even just teaching, just being with youth, doing things for youth, but if it’s easy for me to get lied on for something that I know I did not do, that passion’s gone,” Warren said. “Then I didn’t even have the school backing me up on this at all.”
Warren said after she was removed from class, she wasn’t given a chance to weigh in and wasn’t able to see video referenced in the police report. She said the school district also has not contacted her about her job status.
“We have parents that before due diligence, they’re doing damage,” David Madden said.
Madden and Warren said they worked together to run a non-profit helping the homeless, renovating homes for seniors and teaching workforce skills.
“Who’s protecting our teachers? That’s what I want to know. And the school board needs to do something about it because you’re losing good teachers,” Madden said.
Now, Warren is trying to figure out how she can move on.
“I don’t know,” she said.
CBS4 News reached out to the school district for comment.