Salisbury High student hurt when classmate shoves pencil in his nose

Published 12:00 am Wednesday, December 2, 2009

By Sarah Nagem
snagem@salisburypost.com
Damaris Davis says her 14-year-old autistic son is afraid to return to Salisbury High School after another student assaulted him.
And Davis is unhappy that school officials waited about three hours to call her and did not have her son examined for injuries.
Doctors later determined that her son, Chandler Davis, suffered a broken nose.
Salisbury Police charged the other student, Dwayne Brown, 17, of 618 E. Franklin St., last week with assault with intent to inflict serious injury. Davis’ son, Chandler Davis, does not face charges, according to Police Chief Mark Wilhelm.
Dr. Windsor Eagle, principal at Salisbury High, said school officials do not “stop everything” to notify parents right away about incidents.
“We try to contact parents just soon as we can on all disciplinary (measures),” Eagle said.
Around 10:30 on the morning of Sept. 9, Davis said, Chandler got into an insult match with classmate Brown during an Exceptional Children’s class.
From information Davis has received, the teasing escalated, and then Brown went to the front of the classroom where Chandler was sitting and repeatedly shoved a pencil up his nose.
Brown punched Chandler in the nose twice while the pencil was still in his nose, Davis said.
School officials gave him paper towels to stop his nose from bleeding and told him to hold his head back, Chandler told his mother later.
He also used his own T-shirt to cover his nose, she said. She still has the bloody shirt.
Davis thinks school officials should have contacted her immediately. She acknowledges that she turned off her cell phone that day from 12:15 to 1:15 p.m. when she went to the Rowan Public Library. But when she turned the phone back on, she says she found messages from two assistant principals รณ left at 1:10 and 1:15 p.m.
Davis took her son to the emergency room at Rowan Regional Medical Center that day, where she learned Chandler had a fractured nose and a puncture wound, according to a hospital record. She showed the hospital record to a Post reporter.
She said she tried to talk to Salisbury High’s school resource officer about the fight the next day and again four days later but had trouble reaching him.
In the end, she and the officer did not discuss the incident for 10 days, she said.
Chandler did not return to school until Sept. 29. He didn’t have a good day, Davis said.
That day, other students accused Chandler of lying about being assaulted by Brown, she said.
A teacher’s assistant in the class told Chandler not to aggravate Brown “because that’s how you got beat up the first time,” Chandler told his mother.
Around 7 or 8 that evening, she said, Chandler became very frustrated and did not want to talk about school.
He hasn’t gone back.
“Chandler is scared,” she said. “He’s scared.”
Davis said she has noticed changes in her son’s personality since the fight. He’s more indecisive, she said, and afraid to go to sleep.
“He’ll sleep during the day but not at night,” Davis said.
Chandler was not suspended from school. Davis said she heard Brown was suspended for five days, but Eagle would not comment on that.
“I think that’s a confidential-type procedure,” Eagle said.
Davis said she plans to withdraw Chandler from Salisbury High and move her family to California, where her brother lives.
She plans to leave next month.
“That boy could have killed my son,” Davis said.

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