West Haven teacher fired after aggressive video with student sur - WFSB 3 Connecticut

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West Haven teacher fired after aggressive video with student surfaces

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Video shows teacher flipping student out of his chair. (submitted video) Video shows teacher flipping student out of his chair. (submitted video)
WEST HAVEN, CT (WFSB) -

A West Haven middle school teacher was fired after a video showed him yanking the chair from underneath a student, which sent him to the floor.  

A criminal investigation was launched against David Pfaff, who was a teacher from Bailey Middle School, seen being aggressive with the student last week.

"We escorted that teacher out off campus with other supervisors with others with the Board of Ed, the school resource officer and now the police department because of that video has begun a criminal investigation,” West Haven Police Sgt. David Tammaro said.

When the unidentified student wouldn't listen, instead of calling the office or school security, Pfaff is seen pulling the chair.

The video was taken on a cell phone by a student, then seen by a parent and sent to the administration.  

Pfaff, who taught science, was just hired in West Haven this summer.  Because Pfaff was still a probationary employee, the district quickly fired him.

"As soon as we were notified last week of the incident in question, we immediately contacted the appropriate authorities and terminated the teacher. We cannot comment further as the investigation is ongoing and it’s also a personnel matter,” West Haven Superintendent Neil C. Cavallaro said in a statement on Monday. 

Eyewitness News asked police if Pfaff could face charges.

"I don't think we're going to go into the specific charges until we sit down with a prosecutor and see if it warrants that,” Tammaro said. “But we believe it does."

Residents and parents said they were disturbed to see the video.

"I didn't expect to hear anything going on at Bailey right across the street from where I live,” Rocco Cimino, of West Haven, said.

"It’s just one of those things you don't like to see,” Joe Pascarelli, of West Haven, said. 

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