Police investigate assault involving Wilson Middle School Volleyball team and coach
CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG) - The Cedar Rapids School District said it was investigating an incident Tuesday involving the 7th Grade Wilson Middle School Volleyball team and the coach.
According to students, an argument began between several players and the coach after a game in Iowa City.
“She ran up, and that was when she threw Breasia (Jackson) against a chair to get to me,” said Brooklyn Taylor, one of the players. “She slapped me on my arm twice and grabbed me.”
Taylor said the teacher hit her and, while doing so, shoved other teammates.
“When she came up and smacked (Brooklyn) trying to block,” said Breasia Jackson.
That was when Alayna Diggins said he pulled out her phone and recorded video of the incident. In the video, you can see players and the teacher screaming. At one point, you can hear a student scream that the teacher hit her, but the teacher denied the allegations.
“She saw me recording after we all got her off of Taylor,” said Diggins. “I asked why you would hit her, and she was yelling in my face, ‘you’re going to the office.’ She grabbed for my phone, and she hit me; I moved back, and she tried to hit me again, so I swung at her hand.”
Diggins said a majority of the team decided to get off the bus because they said they felt unsafe. That was when they started calling their parents.
“All the girls were screaming at each other, and you could hear the teacher in the background,” said Jerylann Sanders, Alayna’s mother. “I couldn’t make out what was going on in the world, you could imagine all the things that were going flying through my head.”
Diggins said it was hours before all the students made it back to Cedar Rapids. That was where she said she was interviewed by Principal Mike Waters.
The Coralville Police Department took a report of an assault around 6:30 p.m. Tuesday. The Cedar Rapids Police Department said it was investigating another assault separate from the incident that happened in Coralville.
While the school and two police departments continue to investigate, parents worry about what kind of trauma an incident like this would create for the students.
“Some of the girls were shaken up,” said Brandon Jackson, Breasia’s Father. “Some don’t want to continue sports. As a coach or parent, you don’t want anyone to experience anything like that.”
We are not releasing the name of the teacher at this time, as charges have not been filed. The Cedar Rapids School District sent another note home to parents saying its first priority was the safety and well-being of students, but it can’t comment on confidential personnel or student issues. That’s required under the law. That would only change if the investigation results in a criminal charge or if a teacher was fired.
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