Disability Law

Suit Claims School District Violated ADA with Arrest of 8-Year-Old Girl

The parents of child with Asperger’s syndrome have filed suit against her northern Idaho school district and the sheriff’s department for the arrest of their daughter in the third grade.

Spring Towry and Charles Towry claim a violation of the Americans with Disabilities Act in their suit, filed in federal district court in Idaho, the Associated Press reports.

Eight-year-old Evelyn Towry was arrested in January 2009 at the Kootenai Elementary School, handcuffed and taken to the lockup, the AP story says. She was later released to her parents, and prosecutors dropped the charge. School staffers say they called police because the girl had spit on and inappropriately touched two teachers.

After the incident, Charles Towry had said Evelyn reacted violently after staffers who had placed her in a separate classroom tried to restrain the girl as she tried to leave, the story says. The girl was placed there after being barred from a school party for wearing a sweatshirt designed to look like an animated cow character, he alleges.

The defendants are the Lake Pend Oreille School District and the Bonner County Sheriff’s Department. The school district denies any wrongdoing, according to a separate Associated Press story.

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