Kindergartner accused of sexual misconduct

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by Tanya Mendis

Bio | Email | Follow: @tanyamendis

azfamily.com

Posted on June 25, 2014 at 10:38 PM

Updated Monday, Jun 30 at 10:57 AM

SURPRISE, Ariz. -- A 5-year-old boy in Surprise is accused of sexual misconduct for pulling his pants down on the playground.

The mother of Eric Lopez says back in April, her son was on the playground at Ashton Ranch Elementary School when another student told him to pull his pants down or else he would do it for him.

Erica Martinez’s son complied, pulling down his pants and underwear in front of several other students.

When teachers saw what happened, they hauled Eric into the principal’s office where he was forced to sign a document that labeled his actions “sexual misconduct.” Eric received detention as punishment.

Martinez says she was not present for the meeting and not notified about the incident until after the fact.

“He’s a 5-year-old," Martinez said, angrily. “He does not know right from wrong yet.”

Martinez showed 3TV documentation confirming that she tried to appeal the label in her son’s permanent file.

“My son is not a sexualized minor,” Martinez said.

The school responded in a letter saying it followed proper procedures and protocols.

Dysart Unified School District policy labels indecent exposure as a form of sexual misconduct. Under the district rules, administrators must present the student with the accusations, but they are not required to have a parent present for the meeting unless a student specifically asks for his or her parent to be there.

Martinez said her kindergartner did not know he had the right to do that and signed the documents because school administrators told him to.

She wants the documentation removed from her son’s file or amended to eliminate the “sexual misconduct" language.

“I’m just heartbroken,” Martinez said. “That’s not my son.”

3TV reached out to a Dysart Unified School District spokesperson for a response but did not hear back.

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