Freeburg teacher sued for breaking student's finger

Ann Knef Nov. 7, 2006, 4:21am

The mother of an 8-year-old Freeburg student claims a 50-year-old teacher broke her son's finger after hurling a baseball at close range during a PE class last May.

Amy Bald filed suit against teacher Jack Bayers and Freeburg Community Consolidated School District 70 Nov. 2 in St. Clair County Circuit Court, on behalf of her son Matthew Bald.

She claims Bayers retaliated against him during a baseball game after Bayers missed a catch thrown from the outfield.

"While Matthew Bald was in the outfield, a ball was hit to him and he threw the ball back to the infield to Jack Bayers, who fumbled the catch, which resulted in the ball hitting him on the chin," the complaint states.

Seeking in excess of $200,000 in damages, Bald is represented by Matthew Marlen of Belleville.

"As Mr. Bayers approached him, Matthew was cowering as he was charged by Jack Bayers, and Jack Bayers said, 'think you can catch this' and threw the ball at Matthew Bald from a distance of three feet with sufficient force to break Matthew Bald's finger," the complaint states.

The suit claims Bayers is five foot, ten inches tall and weighs 200 pounds.

Amy Bald also claims Bayers refused to obtain medical attention for her son after he complained that he thought his finger was broken.

"That Jack Bayers, as both a teacher and an adult, had a duty to refrain from injuring the children that he was supervising, and had a duty to obtain prompt medical attention for any child who suffered injury while under his care and supervision," the complaint states.

The suit claims Matthew Bald suffers from great physical pain, mental anguish and loss of a normal life. He claims hospital and pharmaceutical expenses and claims his future earning capacity has been seriously diminished.

Amy Bald claims the school district is negligent for not properly investigating Jack Bayers' background when it "should have known of his short temper and his aggressive nature toward children," the complaint states.

She also claims the school district failed to terminate Bayers' contact with children when it knew of his temperament.

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