CHARLOTTE, NC — Cell phone video shows a teaching assistant at South Mecklenburg High School in an altercation with a student on April 23.
The teaching assistant was named as the victim in the police report that was filed.
Classmates say it all started when the teacher's assistant told the student to put his phone away and he wouldn't.
A classmate - who asked us not to identify her - said the freshman started cursing at the teacher's assistant - then threatened to beat her.
When they stepped out of the classroom - and the teacher's assistant was planning to get school security - students say the boy hit the teacher multiple times before she pushed back.
“He punched her three times and like, she just like had enough, and it was self-defense," said the witness.
That student believes the teaching assistant should not be punished.
A CMS spokesperson sent Channel 9 a statement that reads in part: "The safety of students and staff is a top priority in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools. The district is unable to comment on matters under investigation."
The classmate Channel 9 spoke with said the fight caught everyone by surprise because they have seen fights between students before but never between a staff member and student.
"Everybody was worried about the teacher's assistant more than the other guy because everybody saw that it was him that started the fight."
Charlotte-Mecklenburg police were called to the school to help and confirmed there was a fight - but the school district's police department is handling the investigation.
The district attorney will decide on any charges.
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