D.A.R.E. officer accused of initiating slapping incident - WSMV Channel 4

D.A.R.E. officer accused of initiating slapping incident

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LINDEN, TN (WSMV) -

A sheriff's deputy who works with students was accused of telling classmates of a 13-year-old boy to slap him in the back of the head when he answered a question incorrectly.

According to the teen's mom, Perry County Deputy Carl Hooper apologized, and Sheriff Tommy Hickerson said Hooper will be able to return to the classroom. But the mother is hoping that's not true.

Keri Prater said her son, Trevin Prater, was attacked during school hours when he got a question wrong.

Hooper was working as a drug resistance D.A.R.E. officer at Linden Middle School when the alleged event occurred.

"The officer stated to classmates, 'how about you hit him in the back of the head while I turn mine.' The officer did turn his head, and 10 to 12 students hit my son in the back of the head," Keri Prater said.

D.A.R.E. is an international program that teaches students skills in resisting drugs, gangs and violent behavior.

Hickerson said Hooper has been with the sheriff's office about eight years.

"As far as I'm concerned, he's a good officer. Any other questions will have to be answered by the TBI," Hickerson said.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation said Tuesday it has chosen to not look any further into the allegations.

That's not good enough, says the boy's mom.

"It was harassment to know my son had to endure that intimidation, especially by an authority figure," Keri Prater said.

Hickerson said Hooper has been cleared of the allegations, but he has not returned to the middle school classroom yet.

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