Shocking Video Shows Elementary School Principal Aggressively Paddling 6-Year-Old Student

An ongoing investigation is underway in southwest Florida concerning an elementary school principal. WINK News has reported that a video has emerged showing the principal, Melissa Carter of Central Elementary School, engaged in the paddling of a 6-year-old student.

The incident was recorded by the child’s mother, who captured the alleged paddling on camera.

The paddling was reportedly administered as a response to the young child’s act of “scratching a computer screen,” as detailed by David Begnaud of CBS This Morning. Shockingly, the first-grader endured this punishment three times. Begnaud emphasized the child’s young age, stating,

“This girl, age 6, is 3 ft tall and weighs 40 lbs.”

David Begnaud/ Twitter
David Begnaud/ Twitter

The unfolding incident traces its origins to a visit the 6-year-old’s mother made to the school to settle a fine related to the alleged computer damage, as reported by WINK News.

A police report, which was obtained by the news outlet, revealed that during this visit, the first-grader’s mother mentioned the paddling incident in the presence of both herself and a deputy. However, due to a language barrier, she expressed difficulty in comprehending certain aspects of the situation. This language barrier further complicates the already complex circumstances surrounding the incident.

As per the mother’s account, upon her arrival at the school, she was escorted to the principal’s office, where the sole attendees were herself, the principal, and a clerk.

She conveyed her deep concern that her narrative regarding the paddling incident might not be taken seriously. Consequently, she took out her phone and began recording the interaction. Her reasoning for this proactive step was rooted in a belief that her actions were driven by a larger purpose – she believed she had “taken a stand for my daughter, in the hope that all parents would become aware of what is transpiring within this school.”


WINK News reached out to the Hendry County School District to inquire about Principal Carter’s employment status within the district. When contacted, the CBS affiliate received a response of “no comment.”

As per the school district’s own handbook, any student found to have intentionally caused damage to a school device is liable to face disciplinary consequences ranging from verbal warnings to potential expulsion. However, it’s noteworthy that the handbook explicitly prohibits the use of paddling or corporal punishment.

It’s important to note that, at present, Florida Law does not contain explicit prohibitions against the use of corporal punishment, as reported by USA Today.

David Begnaud/ Twitter

The policy promotes practices that are respectful towards students and safeguard their constitutionally guaranteed individual rights.

WINK News conducted a more in-depth interview with the mother who recorded the paddling incident, during which she conveyed the intense negativity she observed. In her own words, she remarked, “The level of anger and aggression with which she struck my daughter was something I’ve never displayed in disciplining her.” Speaking in Spanish, she continued, “I’ve never used physical punishment like what I witnessed.”

Overcome with emotion, the woman tearfully reiterated, “I had never resorted to physical discipline before.”

David Begnaud/ Twitter

“This constitutes aggravated battery,” declared Brent Probinsky, an attorney specializing in cases involving undocumented immigrants. “They wield a tool capable of inflicting serious physical harm.”

The family’s legal representative further articulated, “The child is overwhelmed by fear and vulnerability. She finds herself utterly powerless in the clutches of these adults who subjected her to extreme, cruel, and sadistic treatment.”

David Begnaud/ Twitter

The mother took her daughter to the doctor the same day to document the red marks and bruises caused by the paddle. She is now worried about long-lasting psychological damage.

“I’m going to get justice for my daughter because if I could not do it in front of her, I’m going to do it with justice,” the mom said.

We hope that this mom gets the justice she so desperately deserves and that the school will release further guidance and a statement in regards to the incident.


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