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Substitute teacher charged with assaulting autistic son

Posted January 8, 2007
Updated September 30, 2008

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— A substitute teacher at a Clayton elementary school was arrested and charged Friday in connection with allegations that she assaulted her own autistic child.

Several faculty members told investigators that on Dec. 8, Anita Marie Dankin, 41, of Kenly, slammed her son's head against the floor and then kicked him.

Dankin is charged with two counts of child abuse.

At the time of the alleged incident, she was working as a substitute teacher at East Clayton Elementary School. Johnston County school officials said Dankin is no longer approved to teach for the school system.

The Johnston County Sheriff's Office and Department of Social Services are investigating the incident.


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  • AutismRN Jan 9, 2007

    As the mother of an autistic child, I understand the enormous stresses involved. However, there is absolutely no excuse for violence against a child regardless of their disability. If anything these children need more care and understanding than most. This story illustates the dire need for more support of families with disabled children.

  • entryrejected Jan 9, 2007

    I think parents should start interviewing the teachers. They couldn't do much worse.

  • gleebschnouser Jan 9, 2007

    Turtlepit - They are filling a hole and that is all. Anything more would require effort and knowledge/care of what is good for the kids. Not to mention it would cost money...

  • turtlepit77 Jan 9, 2007

    Why are so many personal in our school systems going to jail and doing such crazy things? In the past week there have been two school personal from Johnston County that have been charged with a crime. This one and a Cleveland School secretary who assaulted an officer. Are these schools really checking out these people or just filling a hole ??

  • diwanicki Jan 9, 2007

    Someone should do that to her!! I am glad to know she wont be teaching there anymore. What is this world coming to??