Sep 26, 2013 7:12 PM by Chris Welty

Alleged Case of Abuse at Branch Elementary

An Acadia Parish mother wants answers after she says her son came home from school with bruises and scratches.

Eight year old Dylan Milliman is autistic and refused to get on the bus at Branch Elementary nearly two weeks ago. His family says three faculty members forced him on the bus, bruising his arms and scratching his chest. The Acadia Parish School System and the Sheriff's Office is investigating.

On September 11th, Dylan refused to get on the bus. His mom says the school is supposed to call her to pick him up, but that never happened.

"There was bruising, friction marks, I saw thumb marks and a large scratch going from his shoulder to his chest," said Shandell Milliman, Dylan's mom.

She says the school has gone too far. When seeing the bruises, she went to the school and asked questions. Milliman says faculty questioned if she had abused her son.

"I said, y'all would have seen the damages, the torn shirt, the damages past his sleeve and collar. If I did it, why didn't you call the APSO?"

Branch Elementary Principal Marlene Courvelle declined comment directing us to her supervisors at the Acadia Parish School Board. Superintendent John Bourque tells KATC the district is investigating, but he can't comment on this case. He went on to say, the school released surveillance video to the Acadia Parish Sheriff's Office.

"They didn't use proper protocol and, with the principal Ms. Courvelle present, it shows they didn't know what they were doing," said Milliman.

She wants teachers trained better to handle students with special needs. Milliman is planning to file suit against the school and the district.

The Acadia Parish Sheriff's Office could not tell KATC if anyone is facing charges. Once the investigation is complete, the case will be handed over to the District Attorney's Office.

Chris Welty



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