Student with autism viciously assaulted by school official in cafeteria
BROOKLYN, N.Y.(WPIX) — "It is very clear that the paraprofessional went at him. Pow!," Sanford Rubenstein did not pull any punches when describing what played out much more vividly on video: An 11-year-old Anatoly Veltman, a child with autism child who has the mindset of a 6-year-old, getting viciously punched by a para-professional in his fifties.
During a late afternoon news conference, Rubenstein said there was no excuse for the incident, "It is outrageous and unacceptable for a school paraprofessional to punch an 11-year-old autistic child."
The incident occurred on August 7, 2014 in the cafeteria at P.S. 225. The paraprofessional who threw the punch is Milton Parker. The woman who protects the child afterwards is Brenda Rodriguez.
Rubenstein shared a Department of Education document where Rodriguez says she did not see a punch, adding that all she saw was a "commotion" between the two, "It's clear when you look at the video that she was looking at the paraprofessional who punched this young man when it happened. So obviously it appears that she is not truthful."
The boy's father Anatoly Sr. shared what his son looked like in the ER shortly after the punch was thrown, "I saw a huge blue bruise above his eye and it was clear to me that he was punched with force and somebody tells me then that it was in fact the paraprofessional assigned to children's safety." Asked what was his reaction, he simply said, "I wouldn't believe it."
Parker did plead guilty to a misdemeanor assault last spring, Rubenstein says getting information in the civil matter has been challenging, creating what he described in the following manner, "We've heard of the blue wall of silence, now we have the chalkboard wall of silence."