KEY POINTS

  • The abuse came to light after the parents noted bruises on the boy's body
  • The two women were arrested on felony counts of injury to a child
  • They are no longer employed with the school district

A Texas teacher and her school aide, who were accused of abusing two young students with autism at a special needs school in Aldine, have been arrested on felony charges.

Britnee Vaughn, 35, a first-grade teacher for kids at Raymond Elementary School, and her assistant, 22-year-old Maria Gonzalez-Valencia, were arrested on felony counts of injury to a child under 15. It wasn't clear when the duo was arrested.

Vaughn was accused of kicking and roughly holding a 6-year-old non-verbal boy, while Gonzalez-Valencia was accused of hitting the same child, identified as Pablo Reyna Jr., with an unknown object. Vaughn allegedly also lifted another 9-year-old child off the floor by his ear, according to court records, as per NY Post

The abuse came to light after the parents of Reyna Jr noticed the boy coming home with bruises and scratches on his body. Since the boy could not speak, the parents initially thought their child got bruised while playing. However, when the pattern repeated multiple times over the months, they approached the school to find out the reason behind the injuries.

The school's principal then started an investigation, and found two surveillance videos from the boy's classroom that revealed the abuse.

A surveillance video from March 24 showed Gonzalez-Valencia hitting Reyna Jr. in the forehead with an unknown object after he touched an item on her desk. After the assault, the child could be seen holding his head in pain.

In another video from the next day, Vaughn could be seen kicking the same victim, while he was spinning on the floor. Video footage from April 4 showed Vaughn abusing another 9-year-old child.

"It's heartbreaking because he isn't able to talk. He has autism, and he doesn't talk, and he was not able to let me know what was going on," the boy's mother, Angelica Frias, said, as reported by ABC 13.

Aldine Independent School District announced Tuesday that both Vaughn and Gonzalez-Valencia were no longer employed with the school district.

The court ordered to release Vaughn from jail after posting a $100,000 bond, while Valencia-Gonzalez remains behind bars on a $35,000 bond.

classroom-gb1f7b92ff_1280 Representative image Photo: Credit: Pixabay / weisanjiang