WCS Superintendent Mike Looney

After the Williamson County Board of Education met in an executive session attorney-client meeting Saturday morning for more than an hour preceding a scheduled annual budget meeting, WCS Communications Director Carol Birdsong announced the board will meet in special-called meeting Monday to discuss the assault charges brought against superintendent Mike Looney.

"Board members' questions regarding recent events at Franklin High School involving Dr. Looney were answered," Birdsong said in a media release, after the executive session.

The purpose of the special called meeting is for the board "to discuss and deliberate its position on this event."

According to WCS general counsel and deputy superintendent Jason Golden, school board chairman Gary Anderson, a board member for over 20 years, decided to schedule the meeting.

The public meeting will be Monday, Feb. 26 at 6:30 p.m. in the district's Professional Development room, located at 1781 West Main Street, Franklin.

Looney has adamantly denied the assault charge filed against him Wednesday by Franklin Police after an incident with a student at Franklin High School Tuesday.

“I apologize to the community for the distraction that this accusation has caused,” Looney said in a previous statement. “I completely deny the allegations and have faith that the legal process will result in a positive resolution."

On Tuesday, Franklin Police officers and paramedics were dispatched to FHS for a reported psychological emergency.

According to an Affidavit of Complaint, filed by FPD Officer Dwayne Burress and obtained from the Williamson County General Sessions Court, the juvenile’s mother requested the student be transported to the hospital. 

“Dr. Looney placed himself between the officer and the student and stated that the juvenile would be taken to his office,” the affidavit said. 

Officers listed as witnesses in the affidavit include Officer Steve Rich, Sgt. Bob Kupczyk.   

The affidavit continues as follows:

“Dr. Looney told the student that he would not have a scene at the school and told her to stop crying. Dr. Looney grabbed the juvenile by the arm and pulled her from a chair. Dr. Looney escorted her to his personal vehicle. The mother of the juvenile objected and was clear that she did not consent to her child going anywhere but to a hospital by ambulance.”

Then the affidavit explains that Rich and Burress removed the juvenile from Looney’s vehicle.

“Dr. Looney attempted to intervene and attempted to direct officers in their actions. Dr. Looney was aggressive in his actions toward the mother of the juvenile and encroached on her personal space causing the child’s mother to feel fearful of her safety. Dr. Looney stated to the mother, ‘I will not have an incident at the school.’ The child was transported by EMS.

The FPD media release also said the officers involved consulted Wednesday with the Williamson County Magistrate, who issued an arrest warrant, charging Looney with assault.

Looney surrendered himself at the Williamson County Jail after Franklin Police notified him of the warrant. Looney is free on $1,500 bond set by the Magistrate. He is due in court March 8 at 1 p.m.

(3) comments

VictorA

I hope the board will ask one simple question, "What is current board policy for a teacher that does this exact, same thing?" Shouldn't a superintendent be subjected to the same rules and policy as teachers? Of course, they might just ask some of the teachers who've been put on administrative leave, fired, or transferred to come as expert witnesses. But, I'd bet they won't...they'll have a few 'character' witnesses to say Dr. Looney would never do what these emergency responders say he did. The answer to that questions is fairly easy - He pulled a female, student by the arm, out of a meeting with real professionals and to 'his vehicle', really? All of this was against her will and against emergency responders request. Isn't that in and of itself against the law? I suppose we'll have to see, 'again', if justice is different for leaders.

Concerning

Exactly right. The board shouldn’t need to figure out its Position. It should have a Policy already in place and if it doesn’t, this should be top of the list. Anyone in the school system arrested for assault should be placed on leave until the matter goes to court. It’s just common sense.

Bob Marsh

The Board of Education appears to be very laid back about all of this. Why isn't Looney out on leave till this is settled? Very strange. Herald also seems to be taking this with untypical restraint.

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