Parents speak to school board after school employee found in closet with special needs child

Published: Jun. 29, 2022 at 5:30 PM CDT
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HEALDTON, Okla. (KXII) - Healdton police were called to a Texoma school for children with special needs after a school worker was caught in the closet with a child eight weeks ago.

Wednesday morning, family members of the victim anxiously waited to speak with the school board about what happened at a meeting.

The victim’s mom, Stephanie King, and stepmom, Ashley Ross told News 12 they’ve been waiting for weeks for this meeting, and felt like the school board didn’t care about their daughter, who has special needs.

“These kids are our silent victims,” King said. “A lot of times they cannot speak up for themselves. They don’t understand what’s going on.”

According to a Healdton police report, 25-year-old Logan Smith was found in a cleaning closet at the Tri-County Interlocal Cooperative school with King’s daughter, a 16-year-old student who has a mental disability.

“It’s our job as parents, as teachers, as educators to protect those kids and make sure this doesn’t happen,” King said.

According to the report, Smith denied to police touching the girl on her private areas, but did admit getting sexual gratification from touching her elsewhere, and admitted he would have gone further had he not been interrupted.

“We’ll never know what happened in that closet,” Ross said. “And we know that he was-she said tickling her. That’s as far as we’re gonna know. But we know that he said he got sexual gratification from that. And then we know that there- he was reported to the school with an incident with another child, twice, just weeks before it happened to Sadie.”

That first child’s father told News 12 he informed the school when Smith inappropriately grabbed his daughter, but nothing was done.

“We just want to see changes, we want to see something happen,” King said.

While they wait for charges to be filed, King is wondering how it happened to her daughter in the first place.

“Obviously there’s something wrong, it shouldn’t have happened in the first place,” King said. “But also the administrator, she shouldn’t have been the one to decide with [the first child] whether it was appropriate or not. The police should have been called and that should have been the police or the DA, somebody else’s decision.”

News 12 showed up to the meeting where board members would decide whether the administrator, Michelle Taylor, would receive disciplinary action.

After a closed executive session, the school board voted to “authorize the board’s attorney to undertake such actions as are consistent with the discussions in executive session.”

News 12 tried to clarify what that meant, but multiple school board members declined to comment.

District attorney Craig Ladd said the incident is still being reviewed.

As of Wednesday, no charges had been filed.

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