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Indiana teacher who was early retired after punching a student in the face faces battery charges, officials say

ELKHART, Indiana — A now-retired Indiana high school teacher was arrested Thursday after video showed him hitting a student during a confrontation over wearing a hooded sweatshirt on school grounds, officials said.

Security footage obtained by CNN shows the February 25 incident at Jimtown High School in Elkhart, Indiana.

In the video, teacher Michael Hosinski jogs down a school hallway, appears to be chasing a student, and grabs the student’s backpack. Hosinski, 61, points a finger at the student, then slaps him in the face, banging the student’s head against the wall.

With the student holding his head with one hand, Hosinski grabs the student’s arm and begins dragging the student down the hallway before the student falls to the ground. At this point another adult appears in the video and Hosinski walks away from the student.

After a police investigation, Hosinski was provisionally charged with assault, which is a felony, the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office said in a news release posted to Facebook Thursday night. A request for a formal charge has been filed, the sheriff’s office said.

CNN could not determine if Hosinski has legal counsel and could not reach him for comment.

Hosinski, a 40-year-old teaching veteran who was named 2020 Teacher of the Year in a school social media post, had planned to retire in June as a teacher of world civilization and sociology, according to school board meeting minutes from January.

Less than two hours after Hosinski punched the student on Feb. 25, he requested that the Baugo Community School Board grant him early retirement, Superintendent Byron Sanders said in a letter to families Sunday.

On February 28, the school board unanimously approved the request for early retirement. Hosinski will receive all standard retirement benefits, a source familiar with board policies told CNN.

What sparked the confrontation

The altercation began after Hosinski confronted the student about wearing a hooded sweatshirt to class, Sanders said in a Feb. 25 news release. Hoods are not allowed in school except on special days, according to the school handbook.

A verbal exchange ensued, with Hosinski slapping the student in the face and the student’s head banging against the wall, causing “visible injuries,” Sanders said.

Medical personnel treated the student immediately, and administrators contacted the Elkhart County Sheriff’s Office and the Indiana Department of Child Services, according to Sanders’ release.

Brian Heinemann, deputy communications director for the Indiana Department of Child Services, told CNN in an email, “Unfortunately, Indiana’s confidentiality laws prohibit us from commenting on DCS involvement, even to confirm or deny an investigation.”

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https://abc13.com/teacher-arrested-jimtown-high-school-indiana-hit-students-hooded-sweatshirt/11620212/ Indiana teacher who was early retired after punching a student in the face faces battery charges, officials say

Dais Johnston

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