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Family of IPS student beaten in class says they asked IPS to investigate before retaining lawyers

Family asked IPS to investigate classroom fights

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — The family of a George Washington Carver School student who was beaten up in the classroom and allegedly recorded by his teacher says the school did not investigate the matter until after they got lawyers involved.

On Wednesday, 23-year-old Julious Johnican, a now former Indianapolis Public School #87 teacher, was charged with felony neglect of a dependent for his alleged role in the September recording of the 7-year-old student. He has not yet been arrested, according to online court records, and his attorney says he has moved to East Chicago. He is set to appear in court on Tuesday.

Prior to that, lawyers for the family of the child say they filed an education act against Indianapolis Public Schools in April and released the recording of the fight to media.

In the recording, a teacher can be heard encouraging the fight to continue.

Lawyers said it was only after they released the video that a criminal investigation was launched and a probable cause affidavit was written. An affidavit often includes information from witnesses and seeks to prove cause for an arrest.

Although the family is grateful charges have officially been filed, they are confused by one key component included in that affidavit.

“What I find very interesting, and I’ve never seen before, is there were statements in the probable cause affidavit that came from a paralegal at IPS,” one of the victim’s attorneys, Tammy Meyer, said. “Instead of talking to the principal that had been there, or the vice principal, it was a paralegal speaking on behalf of IPS, which I find odd and concerning.”

In addition to the arrest warrant, police obtained a warrant for Johnican’s cell phone on May 3.

The family’s lawyers say he has yet to turn that in, which they say likely has additional videos on it.

“This guy has given every excuse, he moved out of town to East Chicago, he doesn’t have transportation, his lawyer hasn’t had time to talk with him,” Meyer said. “We’ve heard every excuse in the world. That cell phone, with multiple videos, is still out there, and not in the hands that it should be in right now.”

Johnican’s attorneys said that due to his move, he has been unable to give the phone to investigators.

The family’s legal team is also calling for Johnican’s Indiana teaching license to be revoked. The Indiana Department of Education responded to News 8 in a statement.

“IDOE cannot automatically revoke the teaching licenses of individuals who have not been convicted of a crime listed in IC 20-28-5-8. To take action on the license, IDOE must comply with the administrative orders and procedures act and initiate administrative proceedings, seeking the determination of an administrative law judge if the evidence warrants revocation. On May 15, IDOE filed a complaint against Mr. Johnican’s license with the Office of Administrative Law Proceedings, seeking revocation. That proceeding remains pending,” the department said.

IPS also issued a statement.

“IPS is aware of the charges filed against a former IPS teacher. The district will continue to comply with any and all investigations concerning this case,” the school system said.

According to emails sent to parents of children who attend the school, administration is searching for a new principal and vice principal for the school following the scandal.

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