Pipe cleaners likely used to tie up DeKalb Schools pre-K student, 4

The two DeKalb County pre-K teachers who resigned after being accused of tying students up as a form of punishment were charged with cruelty to children and false imprisonment, according to documents received from the DeKalb County School District.

Brittnay Ellison, 30, and Shunterria Smith, 35, were suspended by Oak View Elementary School officials after a parent said the two tied two young girls’ hands behind their backs as a form of punishment on Sept. 24, Channel 2 Action News reported.

According to the police report, two yellow and two blue pipe cleaners were taken from the room as evidence. It offered little else about the situation, not detailing allegations brought or for what the student was being punished. One student, a 4-year-old girl, was identified in the report as a victim. Four other 4-year-old students were identified as witnesses.

The school’s principal sent a letter to parents on Thursday that said: “Steps were taken immediately to investigate the allegations that were made including removing the staff members from duty pending resolution of the investigation.”