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Teacher questioning superintendent's pay removed from board meeting in handcuffs

10 January 2018

A chaotic scene broke out at a Louisiana school board meeting after a teacher was arrested, apparently for questioning why the board's superintendent was being given a $38,000 pay raise.

"I have a serious issue with a superintendent or any person in a position of leadership getting any type of raise, I feel like it's a slap in the face for the teachers, the cafeteria workers or any other support staff we have", Hargrave is seen saying in the video posted to YouTube.

Local news station also reported that board member Anthony Fontana ruled her out of order at one point during the discussion.

While she was being recognized by the superintendent, an Abbeville city marshal approached her and asked her to leave.

When Hargrave wouldn't budge, the marshal escorted her out of the room, pushed her to the floor, handcuffed her in the hallway and removed her from the building.

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It is unclear if the security officer was ordered to arrest Hargrave and remove her from the meeting.

"It's a sad, sad day to be a teacher in Vermillion Parish", Hargrave said.

After the vote, Hargrave - who was permitted to speak by the board - told them, "How are you taking the raise when you are basically taking from the teachers and the employees under you?"

A woman who was in the meeting later commented on the incident.

Her removal did not go unnoticed, and one female board member said, "What happened here tonight".

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"Stop resisting", the marshal said to Hargrave in cellphone footage aired by KATC.

Requests for comment from Hargrave and Puyau were not immediately returned Tuesday afternoon.

KATC reports the teacher was booked into jail. The Constitution prohibits the government from punishing or retaliating against people for expressing their views, and the fact that a schoolteacher was arrested at a public meeting of the school board is especially troubling.

Hargrave bonded out of jail, The Associated Press reported.

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Teacher questioning superintendent's pay removed from board meeting in handcuffs