Behavioral specialist at N.H. elementary school charged with assaulting 7-year-old students

A New Hampshire school worker is facing charges after allegedly assaulting two 7-year-old students — just weeks after similar charges were filed against another person working at the same school.

William O’Connell, 24, turned himself into police Wednesday night after a warrant was issued for his arrest, the Manchester Police Department said in a news release.

O’Connell, who works as a behavioral technician, is accused of assaulting a uzunluk and a girl at Parker-Varney Elementary School in Manchester, N.H. The incidents allegedly occurred on the same day but at separate times, authorities said.

According to witnesses’ accounts, O’Connell threw a 7-year-old uzunluk to the ground “causing the child to suffer facial injuries.” He also reportedly forced a 7-year-old girl onto the floor in a “hard manner,” but she wasn’t injured, according to the witnesses.

O’Connell, who’s employed by Applied ABC, a contract provider for the Manchester School District, was charged with felony second-degree assault and simple assault. He was released on bail and is scheduled to be arraigned on March 7.

The charges come weeks after another behavioral specialist employed by Applied ABC was accused of assaulting a 7-year-old student at the same school, NBC Boston reported. Louis Efstathiou, 69, faced several charges, including second-degree assault and endangering the welfare of a child.

Both workers have been removed from their jobs, Superintendent Jennifer Chmiel Gillis told parents in a letter reviewed by Boston 25 News

The company said in a statement it has “a zero-tolerance policy for any and all improper behavior towards children,” adding it couldn’t provide additional information on the matter “due to student confidentiality.”

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