Chicago School Employee Pushes Student Down Stairs

Cell phone video shows a Dunbar Vocational Career Academy employee pushing the girl

A former prosecutor representing a Chicago family said he anticipates criminal charges will be filed against a school security officer who was captured on cell phone video being aggressive with a student.

Chicago Public Schools officials said they removed the employee from duty following the Tuesday incident. Video appeared to show him throwing the female student down the stairs at Dunbar Vocational Career Academy and punching her in the face.

"Seeing this video, it boiled my blood," said attorney Mark Sutter. "[It] made me wish I was a prosecutor again because I would love to prosecute this man for doing what he did to this young child."

The video was first published to the website with the title "Caught On Cell Phone: Chicago School Security Guard Pushes Female Student Down Staircase & Then Decks Her In The Face For Allegedly Putting Hands On Him!" In it, 16-year-old Lauren Goodlow is seen lying on the floor. She was approached by a woman who appears to be a teacher or administrator at the South Side school. Goodlow then stood up and moves toward the guard. The guard appears to punch Goodlow in the face.

"I broke down crying because I couldn't believe that a staff member at a school would treat a child like that," said the girl's mother, Pershaun Goodlow.

A second video showing more of the scuffle was released Friday.

Other students said they believed the safety official was trying to intervene in a fight between two students, one of whom was Goodlow.

"He grabbed her arms to stop her. And she was like, 'Don't touch me,' and she started hitting him. She hit him in his chest. He got mad. He just picked up her arm and threw her down the stairs," said freshman Antonese Brown. "She was laying on her side. Then he tried to help her up and when the girl got up she went to hit him and he pushed her by her head and pushed her back down to the ground."

"He was wrong, but then again, if you're trying to attack this man, why are you trying to attack the man when he grabbed you and told you to calm down," added student Breana Jones.

Pershaun Goodlow said her sophomore daughter went to the emergency room immediately after the scuffle. Days later, she said the teen was still in pain and hadn't yet returned to school.

"She's upset. She's right now complaining about a great deal of pain," the mother explained.

School officials said they do not condone such behavior and turned the case over to the Chicago Police Department.

"The safety of our students is our top priority," CPS spokeswoman Becky Carroll said. "CPS takes matters of employee misconduct very seriously, especially when it involves an employee whose job it is to ensure the safety of students."

Both CPS and CPD officials said interviews and the investigation were ongoing. It wasn't known by Friday afternoon if charges would be filed against anyone involved.

Lauren Goodlow

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