HONOLULU (CN) — An abusive lockdown drill in which a masked man threatened a middle-school classroom with a hammer left the entire class in tears and at least one girl with post-traumatic stress disorder, her parents say in court.
Michelle and Eddie Chavis sued Hawaii and the state Department of Education on Sept. 7 in First Circuit state Court.
According to the bizarre complaint, their daughter and her class at Kaimuki Middle were watching a video about the Sept. 11, 2001 terror attacks on Sept. 11, 2015. Suddenly, “a man wearing a mask rushed into the classroom swinging a large hammer while threatening the students with serious bodily injury and/or death,” the complaint states.
The complaint continues: “Minor and her classmates were immediately placed in fear for their lives. The masked man then walked out of the classroom with the classroom teacher running out behind the masked man, apparently in pursuit of the masked man. Upon the classroom teacher’s return, the teacher locked the classroom doors and called the school office to notify the school administration of the masked man.
“Minor and other students in the classroom were crying and feared for their lives, as they believed they were going to be killed. The classroom teacher was pacing around the classroom and appeared scared, as well.”
Only then, the parents say, did the school administration announce that it was a lockdown drill, planned ahead of time, “to be as realistic as possible.”
The Chavis’s daughter already had been under the case of a psychologist for two years, and the school knew it, they say. She continues to suffer from the stress of the drill, and post-traumatic stress syndrome.
Her parents seek damages and special damages for negligence, breach of duty of care, personal injuries, medical expenses and loss of enjoyment of life.
They are represented by Harrison Kiehm.
Similar lawsuits have been filed against employers who stage such “drills,” in which an armed or men pretend to take employees hostage.