A former Davie school employee charged with child abuse for grabbing an autistic boy by his hair and throwing him to the floor after he misbehaved during a field trip will avoid prison after reaching a plea deal Monday.
David Michael Baier, 50, will serve five years' probation after entering a plea of guilty in the July 2012 incident, Broward State Attorney's Office spokesman Ron Ishoy said.
Baier will also serve 500 hours of community service, will have to complete a 13-week anger management course, will surrender his teaching license, is allowed no contact with unrelated minor children and will have to write a letter of apology within 30 days, Ishoy said.
He will also pay $125 per month for 10 months to the victim for psychiatric therapy.
Baier, who was employed with Alternative Education Foundation schools, was captured on video being “physical” with the boy after the 12-year-old was placed in his care after the trip, according to a Davie Police arrest affidavit.
While in the classroom for punishment, the child fidgeted, talked back and bent forward in his seat. As a result, Baier advised the boy to stand for five minutes without "annoying him," the affidavit said.
When the child crouched on the floor and refused to get up, Baier grabbed him by the hair and pulled him up from the floor, threatening to "do something worse" if he didn’t stand.
After the two exchanged words, Baier threatened to throw the boy to the ground. The child got in a defensive posture and cried, but Baier continued to grab his hair, pulled him from the chair, threw him to the ground and pinned him to the floor "for a brief moment," the affidavit said.
According to the report, the child was “argumentative” and “disrespectful” on the field trip. He refused to tie his shoelace and then pushed his shoe in the face of Baier and another staff member. He also stomped on Baier’s foot, the affidavit said.
Baier was arrested last August on the case. He was arrested again in April after he was accused of abusing a 9-year-old autistic boy.