“I tried to be fair, but it’s not fair,” Sarah Sims said. “There is nothing fair about this.”
Sims said in late September her 9-year-old daughter was getting bullied at Ocean View Elementary. After repeated calls and emails to the school went unreturned she decided to take matters into her own hands. She aimed to prove that her daughter wasn’t being helped by school staff. So she put a digital recorder into her daughter’s backpack to catch audio from inside the classroom.
The recorder was found. Instead of getting help for her daughter from the school she is now facing charges for “use of a device to intercept oral communication a felony as well as a misdemeanor for contributing to the delinquency of a minor,” the news publication stated.
The 9-year-old was then moved to a new classroom only after the horrified mother who was trying to protect her child was arrested.
“I was mortified,” Sims told WAVY. “The next thing I know I’m a felon. Felony charges and a misdemeanor when I’m trying to look out for my kid. What do you do?”
“They aren’t making this about that classroom,” Sims’ attorney Kristin Paulding said. “There are charges that carry jail time.”
The felony charge could carry five years in prison if she is convicted.
“Instead of comforting her she’s going to a magistrate and being handcuffed,” Paulding added.
The lawyer further believes that the charges will fall apart in court and that the charges are unfounded.
“We are at the very early stages of this, but, even at the early stages, I think the community needs to know that this is happening because any parent out there that is sending their child to school now could be at risk for something that happened to Sarah,” Paulding said.
Sims is scheduled to have a preceding court hearing on January 18th.