SILVER SPRING, Md. — A Montgomery County Public School administrator accused of doing nothing to protect the 5-year-old boy placed in handcuffs by police inside an elementary school has been placed on leave, according to two Montgomery County councilmembers.
The lawsuit filed by the 5-year-old boy’s mother directly names East Silver Spring Elementary School Assistant Principal Mrs. Pfeiffer as failing to protect the boy from officers who placed the boy in a police car, screamed in his face, and berated him inside the school.
“What I've learned is that the assistant principal is on administrative leave,” Montgomery Co. Council President Tom Hucker said. “They're doing an internal investigation. I don't have any information about that and I'm sure I won't until it's completed but obviously, every adult who was engaged in this and appears on the video and works for the county completely failed this poor child.”
A spokesperson for MCPS said it cannot comment on Pfeiffer’s current status. She remains on the school's website.
Pfeiffer’s leave comes amidst an internal investigation following the release of 2020 Montgomery County Department of Police body camera footage.
Police released the video last month, more than a year after the incident occurred.
This week the Montgomery County Council questioned Police Chief Marcus Jones and Montgomery County Public Schools Superintendent Jack Smith about the video taken more than a year ago.
Jones said there were disciplinary procedures and actions taken against both officers, but they remain on the job.
According to police the boy allegedly ran away from the school and didn’t want to return and police were called to assist.
It is MCPS policy that police officers do not discipline students.
The child’s family filed a lawsuit against two Montgomery Co. Department of Police officers, the county itself, and the Montgomery County Board of Education.
“It was just heartbreaking for everyone and so I think for myself and for a lot of parents it was the shock, the utter outrage, the questions, many of which are still unanswered that we have,” East Silver Spring parent and PTA Vice President Lima Abdullah said.
Abdullah suggested it might be helpful to have an independent look at what happened inside her children’s elementary school.
“I think though that there are some more steps that need to be taken in terms of accountability and some questions that I know the PTA has and that parents have,” Abdullah said. “We're looking forward to getting that piece of it answered, and perhaps it might be helpful to also have an independent look at some of these things so that we can get a little bit more transparency.”