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Teacher placed on leave following assault accusation

SOUTH POINT — Criminal charges will not be filed against a teacher accused of assaulting a student last month, according to Lawrence County Prosecuting Attorney Brigham Anderson.

A sheriff’s report was filed on March 18 in which a female student accused a teacher of dragging her down a hallway by her ankles to another classroom against her will.

The South Point school district placed Kevin Milem on administrative leave following the incident.

On April 7, Milem’s leave status was updated by the board of education to administrative leave without pay or benefits to be effective through May 22, according to Mark Christian, superintendent.

The board will reconvene at a later date to consider Milem’s employment. The date of the meeting has not yet been set, Christian said.

According to the report, the student alleged Milem asked her to go down the hall to another teacher’s classroom and when she refused, “he began pushing me towards Mr. (Earl) Strohmeyer’s room so I slid down against the wall and Mr. Milem began grabbing at my ankle,” according to the student’s written statement. “Then he grabbed it fully and drug me on my stomach into Mr. Strohmeyer’s room even though I begged him repeatedly to stop and let me go.”

Milem also gave a written statement, which was included with the sheriff’s report. Milem wrote that he asked the student to walk down the hall with him to Strohmeyer’s room at which point she said she started laughing.

“… I thought she was joking,” Milem wrote. “She got to his door and then dropped to the floor. At that time I placed my hands around one of her feet for just a little bit of time. She then stood up and started talking to Mr. Strohmeyer so I then left the room and went back to my classroom.”

Anderson said no assault charge would be filed because he didn’t believe incident warranted a charge.

“I reviewed the report and the video from the school and I don’t believe any criminal act took place,” Anderson said. “For a criminal offense of assault you have to knowingly cause physical harm. He wasn’t trying to harm the student. He was just taking the student into the classroom.”

Anderson said he sent a letter to the school board notifying them that he would not be filing any charges.

“What the school does with it is up to them,” he said.