Avery High School Teacher Suspended After Allegedly Hitting Student With Yardstick

Published Tuesday, September 15, 2015 at 11:41 am

By Jesse Wood

An Avery High School teacher was issued a criminal summons this past Friday after being charged with assault, according to Avery County Sheriff Frye.

Dan Fortune allegedly hit a student with a yardstick “two to three times” on the arm and back on Aug. 31. He has since been suspended by Avery County Schools Supt. David Burleson.

Frye said that the parents of the student came to the Avery County Sheriff’s Office wishing to pursue charges against Fortune. The sheriff’s department conducted an investigation and then took its findings to the District Attorney’s Office.

“The District Attorney’s Office said there was enough to pursue charges,” Frye said.

Burleson confirmed the alleged incident in a statement but declined to comment on the issue.

“An assault charge has been filed against an employee at Avery High School.  In accordance with state and federal law, the Avery County Schools cannot discuss the specifics of this matter; however, the school system is cooperating with law enforcement and we know of no safety concerns at the school. The employee is currently suspended until the issue is resolved.”

Fortune was a history teacher, according to the AHS faculty page.

Fortune’s residential phone was disconnected on Tuesday. In an email, Fortune responded “no thank you” when asked for comment on the allegations.



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