Abuse lawsuit seeks Livonia teachers never teach again

By Bisi Onile-Ere, Local 4 Reporter
Published On: May 08 2013 06:04:47 PM EDT
Updated On: May 08 2013 07:19:50 PM EDT

Mother Terri Telerico filed a lawsuit calming her 3-year-old son, who has down syndrome, was the victim of assault and battery at the hands of his teacher in at Webster Elementary School.

LIVONIA, Mich. -

Another lawsuit involving claims of child abuse has been lodged against Livonia Public Schools.

Mother Terri Telerico is the plaintiff in this one. She says her 3-year-old son, Cayden, who has down syndrome, was the victim of assault and battery. The abuse allegedly came from the hands of Cayden's teacher and a paraprofessional who worked at Webster Elementary School.

"He knocked over a table. They grabbed him by his arm, picked him up, struck him on the buttocks, were yelling directly in his face," said Alexander W. Lyzohub, Telerico's attorney.

The schools district conducted an internal investigation. The teacher, Sharon Turbiak, resigned. The paraprofessional, Nancy Respondek, was fired. Both are named in the lawsuit.

"It's sad, it's horrific, that you put your trust in these individuals and they violate it," said Telerico.

The district released a statement which reads, in part: "Livonia Public Schools did take this situation very seriously, and took measures to ensure the ongoing safety of our children."

Among several changes at the school, cameras have been installed in all preschool classrooms. It's proactive, but this mother it's not enough.

"You have no idea what it's like to put him on a bus to a place that should be safe," she said.

Police investigated the claims but criminal charges were never brought. In addition to monetary damages, the lawsuit asks that the accused are never allowed to teach again.

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