Representatives with the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office say an investigation is ongoing after officials received a report that a child was allegedly stabbed in the arm with a needle by a classmate on the playground. The incident allegedly happened Wednesday at College Park Elementary School.
According to Lt. Brewer with the New Hanover County Sheriff's Office, officials were notified of the incident Friday morning and completed a report.
We spoke to the mother of the child, who says her six-year-old son told them his arm was hurting Thursday. He then told them another student stabbed him in the arm with a needle on the playground Wednesday. She said they rushed the first grader to the Emergency Room for a blood test. It came back negative for Hepatitis B, according to her.
Dr. Rick Holliday, the Assistant Superintendent for New Hanover County Schools said the playground was shutdown Friday. According to him, a safety officer and maintenance crew swept the playground with a metal detector and did not find a needle. The playground was re-opened once it was deemed safe.
Dr. Holliday said at this time they cannot confirm or deny there was a needle. He said the College Park Elementary School Principal met with both students involved in the alleged incident and their parents. At this time he said it does not appear the School District needs to take further action.
While she is still very worried about her son's health, the boy's mother said she is also concerned about the policies in the school system.
She said she was told the playground was checked Wednesday morning, however, she feels there needs to be stronger policies in place when it comes to checking playground county-wide to ensure a similar incident never happens.
Dr. Holliday said it is standard practice to have someone check all playgrounds every morning. He said school officials have told all principals they need to have someone check the playground every morning, looking for any potential issues such as broken equipment.
While the Sheriff's Office said the incident was still under investigation, when first asked about the incident Valita Quattlebaum with the New Hanover County School System said "the school staff, along with the SRO, investigated and the claim is unsubstantiated." Later Quattlebaum and Dr. Rick Holliday, the Assistant Superintendent for New Hanover County Schools, clarified they were investigating the alleged incident and the word "unsubstantiated" was used because they were not able to prove either way that the incident happened. He said they could not find a needle and no needle had been brought to them.Copyright 2015 WECT. All rights reserved.