Hearing on abuse of disabled student gets heated, doctor tossed - CBS46 News

Hearing on abuse of disabled student gets heated, doctor tossed out of court

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A pediatrician raised his voice at an attorney and yelled at an administrative law judge before getting tossed out of a courtroom Wednesday.

Dr. Alan Weintraub was responding to questions from an attorney for Fulton County Schools  about when he first suspected his patient, Garrett Lee, was being abused.

"If I had any concern or Mrs. Lee had any concern that Garrett was being abused, I can assure you I would have reported it," shouted Weintraub.

Shortly after the judge instructed Weintraub to "calm down," the doctor again raised his voice.

"I'm not finished," snapped Weintraub to the judge.

Weintraub turned his attention to the attorney and yelled, "I don't know what happened in the school system but if people knew that this child was being abused in school and they didn't report, then they should be on trial."

After that outburst, the judge ordered Weintraub off the witness stand and out of the courtroom. He returned to testify 10 minutes later. 

It was a dramatic end to a two-day hearing for the Lee family who has sued the Fulton County School District over alleged abuse of their son at Hopewell Middle School in Milton from 2004 to 2007.

A school district investigation conducted in 2007 concluded special education teacher Melanie Pickens physically and mentally abused six disabled students.

A CBS Atlanta investigation in 2011 revealed Fulton County School officials never notified the parents of children mentioned in the report and found the school police failed to investigate the abuse.

Pickens was indicted in 2012, after CBS Atlanta repeatedly asked Fulton County District Attorney Paul Howard why a criminal investigation had not been conducted. 

Mark Lee told CBS Atlanta reporter Jeff Chirico that his son has been diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder and he wants the district to pay for his son's future therapy costs to help him cope.

Fulton County Schools maintained in the hearing that Mark and Shayne Lee should have known about the abuse years ago and therefore their suit is outside the statute of limitations.

The administrative law judge will issue a decision next month.

Pickens pleaded not guilty to 11 counts and awaits trial. 

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