A mother is not pleased that police were called to investigate her 6-year-old daughter with Down syndrome.
Valley Forge Elementary School kindergartener Margot Gaines attracted attention from Tredyffrin police after she pointed a finger at a teacher when she was asked to do something she did not want to do, and said, “I shoot you.”
A police report was filed and no disciplinary action was taken. Mother Maggie Gaines said it was not unlike when her daughter is told it is bed time.
“I hate bed,” the six-year-old would say. “I hate mommy.”
“As most parents can attest, I have learned to not take offense,” said Gaines. “For I know that a short time later she is usually cuddled up to me, while I read bedtime stories and exchange cuddles and kisses before saying good night.”
The school’s principal Rebecca Wills quickly determined that there was not a threat and then followed district policy and convened a “threat assessment” team. The threat assessment team recommended no disciplinary action, and determined that a “transient threat” was made and no harm was made to the teacher or any classmates. A statement made in frustration or anger with no intent is considered a transient threat. Gaines then said that she received a call from the principal that police were going to be notified. The incident was reported to police 24 hours later.