A Queens teacher and an aide are accused of setting up a wrestling match between fourth-grade students in a locked classroom, prosecutors charged Monday.
Joseph Gullotta, 29, and Abraham Fox, 43, of Public School 65 in Ozone Park, were charged with child endangerment after an incident on Thursday in which a 10-year-old child was forced to battle one of his classmates.
According to police, Gullotta told Tomas Rivera to wrestle 9-year-old Justin Stokel in order to get his aggression out. In addition, a girl in the class was reportedly told to shut the door and students were told to stand back when the boys began to beat each other.
Students were reportedly laughing when Tomas' head hit into Justin's mouth. The boys reportedly suffered severe wounds to their faces.
Officials said Fox told Gullotta that Justin may need stitches, however both men would not let the boys go to the nurse for almost two hours and even told them to lie about what had occurred.
A parent alerted school officials after overhearing one of the boys involved in the fight talking about it.
Education Department spokeswoman Margie Feinberg said Gullotta was sent to a teacher reassignment center. Meanwhile, Fox has been suspended without pay.