DCFS adds BPD officer to abuser list

2011-03-19T07:00:00Z 2011-05-17T09:39:17Z DCFS adds BPD officer to abuser listBy Mary Ann Ford | mford@pantagraph.com pantagraph.com

BLOOMINGTON — The Department of Children and Family Services has placed a Bloomington police officer on its State Central Register of “indicated” child abusers following the agency’s investigation into a December incident at Stevenson Elementary School.

By law, police officer Scott Oglesby will remain on the list for five years, said DCFS spokesman Kendall Marlowe. Oglesby has the right to appeal the decision.

While DCFS notified Bloomington officials Thursday, Police Chief Randy McKinley said Friday he had not formally heard of the DCFS action. McKinley said he would consider the agency’s findings and the results of an internal investigation when determining whether any disciplinary action will be taken against the officer.

The internal investigation is underway, he said. 

Oglesby was placed on paid administrative leave following the Dec. 21 incident, but returned to work after McLean County State’s Attorney Bill Yoder announced Feb. 23 that he was not filing criminal charges against Oglesby.  Yoder could not be reached for comment Friday.

Oglesby is on restricted duty, is not in uniform and has no physical contact with the public, McKinley said. Bloomington police union President Todd Keil could not be reached for comment.

Shannon and Lorraine Allison, parents of the 7-year-old Stevenson School child who was involved in the incident, think Oglesby should be removed from the police force.

“He doesn’t represent what a police officer should be, especially with kids. They are there to protect and serve,” said Lorraine Allison. “I trust Bloomington Police Department won’t want abusers on their staff.”

Allison said her son, who is a special needs student at Stevenson, suffers from seizures that cause him to scream and act much like a 2-year-old throwing a tantrum. He had such a seizure on Dec. 21 and was with the school psychologist waiting for his dad to pick him up and take him home.

Lorraine Allison said the psychologist had her son in a restraining hold, which is common practice.

Oglesby became involved after he went to the school after hearing of an unrelated incident involving another student. The school resource officer also was en route.

According to the police report obtained by the Allisons, Oglesby “darted” into the room where the Allison’s son was, told the boy he was giving him a headache and then lifted the 65-pound boy by the throat. He “was lifted off the floor so his feet were dangling … his head was close to the ceiling … his face was turning quite red,” according to the psychologist’s statement to police.

The psychologist left the room and told the school resource officer who then went into the room. Oglesby then grabbed the boy by the arm, lifted him over his shoulder and carried him to the principal’s office where, according to one witness, he “threw” the boy into a chair.

The report further states that Oglesby went back into the classroom and said to school staff, “You got any more?”

Herschel Hannah, District 87 assistant superintendent of human resources, called the incident “very unfortunate.” He said school officials followed district rules to yield to police, but added “the unfortunate thing is you have an officer who has no historical context” about the student.

Hannah said the school will review the DCFS report to determine if there should be any policy changes.

Meanwhile, Lorraine Allison said her son was “incredibly upset” after the incident and remains in counseling. 

“The first thing he asked me was, ‘Mommy, didn’t that police officer’s mommy say he shouldn’t do that to people?’ ” Allison said.

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(10) Comments

  1. sarahsmom
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    sarahsmom - February 10, 2014 10:31 am
    Lets clear up some stuff. Officer Oglesby was fired on 5/13/11 by then Police Chief McKinley. This special needs child was in a basket hold. (Yes it is a restraint and is used in public schools as needed). It was used to keep this child safe, and those around him safe. During his episodes his arms, legs and head would sometimes flail out of control.
    This is why it was used. The situation was under control. Oglesby was at the school for a different reason, he intervened on his own. This child was not acting out and didnt need anything whooped. He also didnt need a police officer to pick him up by the throat per adult witnesses, til he was turning red and looked like he was having difficulty breathing.Dan Fasking I guarentee if your dad choked you in front of teachers he would have went to jail, its illegal, even for cops. Deputy, this child comes from a loving Christian home. Law abiding citizens who respect police officers, then and now. This child isnt afraid of police, he knows it was one person, Oglesby who assaulted him.
    Helpful3, having a special needs child doesn't make you an expert on ALL special needs kids. This child is STILL at his school and is doing well, he is exactly where he needs to be.
  2. Helpful3
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    Helpful3 - January 18, 2014 1:38 am
    One it says this kids was in restraint in a public school. It don't matter if it was a special needs kid. Kids in normal public schools are not suppose to be in restraints AT ALL. The kid needs to be in a school that legally can handle ALL his needs. So shame on the parents and school district for putting the kid in such a situation that the cop had to react in a way he was taught to deal with ANY person acting this way.

    And don't tell me I don't know what I'm speeding about. I got special needs kids. And been dealing with the districts here for 18 yrs. Yes the cop should of found out the situation first. The school staff that was there when the cop came in should of explained what was going on with the kid to the cop as soon he came in. But clearly the staff neglected to informe the officer. I really think he could of token it another way in restaining the situation himself. But cops really don't know what they are walking into on each call. Anyways cops are suppose to be in two on calls like this. So where was his partner at this time?

    And I hope the parents of this child rethinks on keeping this kid in a public school reading what has been written in the article he is a risk to harm others and self. Clearly a danger to be in a public school setting. Even in special needs classes.
  3. Deputy
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    Deputy - January 15, 2014 2:49 pm
    BTP, you misunderstood my comments. I was in no way referring to this incident/child as bad parenting nor was I condoning the actions of Mr. Ogelsby. The situation should have been handled very differently. I was speaking in general about kids throwing fits/tantrums and of Exrepub's comment about moving b/c of kids fighting. Children learn their behavior and limits from their parents and peers. It's up to parents to correct their child and guide them in the right direction. As a volunteer in my daughter's preschool, I already see kids acting out and not obeying the teachers, swearing, etc. Then I see how disconnected the parents are when it comes to meetings, field trips, playing at the park etc. Re: your positive comment about officers, thank you. Most parents unknowingly instill fear in their kids when they jokingly say, "If you don't eat all of your food/sit down/be quiet, etc. that policeman is gonna arrest you and take you away/to jail". In a child's mind, they just see a uniform/badge and hear they are going to be taken away from mom and dad. It instills fear of the police rather than seeing us as a safeguard. When the time comes and a child needs the police, I don't want them to have any hesitation. I hope the Allison's and their son do not group all officers together with Mr. Ogelsby.
  4. IF 6 WAS 9
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    IF 6 WAS 9 - January 15, 2014 8:07 am
    Although I do agree this officer should have been charged, or at least fired. I am glad to know that he is stuck behind a desk at the BPD. It is my understanding that is the worst thing you can do to a cop. Enjoy pushing the papers Oglesby and make sure you always have some aspirin at your desk.
  5. BostonTeaParty
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    BostonTeaParty - January 15, 2014 7:25 am
    Investigation? Already been done by the DCFS. That's why this officer is on the "indicated" list. The Psychologist witnessed this attack on a child. And yes I said attack. Who picks up a child by the throat? What else is that person capable of? Sounds to me like the officer acted with his emotion and not his head. And Deputy...I respect your comments, however this is not a case of bad parenting. This child is Special Needs who suffers from seizures which cause him to act out in the manner described in the article. Regardless of what this Special Needs child was doing, picking him up off the ground by the throat is unnacceptable. Mr. McKinley....do the right thing and fire this individual IMMEDIATELY. To the Allison's...I hope your child will see officers in the future for what they should be and typically are, here to help keep us all safe.
  6. Deputy
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    Deputy - January 14, 2014 12:36 pm
    Dan and Exrepub, there are certain instances as police officers we can not and do not have the legal authority to become involved in and this sounds like one of them. Regardless of whether the child was screaming/throwing a fit, having a tantrum or a seizure, there was no crime being committed. Kids will be kids. I'm not sure what you mean by, "We moved because of the fights etc. to a place where that behavior is not allowed." That behavior is not allowed in any school. It comes down to a matter of how the school enforces the rules and/or if it has the resources to do so. It all begins at home with parenting. I respond to numerous calls a week re: "child out of control". Parents always ask us, "What should I do, they won't...". If the police are responding to your home because your 15y.o. kid is uncontrollable, it's already too late. Something went wrong years ago. Re: Ogelsby, if the investigation is true, he should be disciplined (up to termination if he lifted the child by the throat) and assigned to duties other than patrol for the next five years. I would think the city and Ogelsby would want his possible child interaction to be as limited as possible. There are plenty of people that would jump at the chance to sue the city. Although I'm not sure how Olgeslby would be able to keep his job in the first place if he is listed as an abuser. I know that anyone on my Dept. would be terminated. Your reputation would be fowled in court during testimony, during domestic calls, etc.
  7. exrepub
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    exrepub - January 14, 2014 6:24 am
    Maybe the problem is first of all the reaction by the policeman but secondly that that reaction was set up by the many children who demonstrate the same behavior without an excuse. Many kids are out of control at school and I suppose we have a lot of parents sitting at home making excuses. We moved because of the fights etc. to a place where that behavior is not allowed. Unfortunately the policeman didn't know this child had an excuse although screaming and throwing tantrums seem unusual when having a seizure. It is amazing the police couldn't tell the difference.
  8. Paul Lattan
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    Paul Lattan - January 14, 2014 1:40 am
    Dan, did you even read the article? The child was having a seizure, and the officer picked him up by the throat... how is that even remotely comparable to getting a "whooping" for bad behavior?
  9. Dan Fasking
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    Dan Fasking - January 12, 2014 9:18 pm
    Shame on the parents for allowing the child to throw temper tantrums at that age. This officer showed the whole class how you're supposed to behave. My older brother got a pants down whooping in the first grade by my dad at his desk. No more tantrums for life. Way to go officer, I got your back.
  10. Im2nocnt
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    Im2nocnt - January 12, 2014 1:27 pm
    BPD has had officers do worse and they are still on the force.
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