Documents: Rockville elementary school principal caught on video stomping on student’s foot

A Rockville, Maryland, elementary school principal has turned himself in on assault charges after authorities say he was caught on video stomping on a student’s foot.

Ritchie Park Elementary School Principal Andrew Winter, 54, is facing a charge of second-degree assault.

The alleged assault happened in February, the Rockville Police Department said in a news release.

According to a statement of charges filed in Montgomery County District Court, detectives reviewed school video of the incident, which showed Winter standing next to the student — identified only as Student 1 — as other students move about. The principal is seen talking with the student before Winter grabbed the student’s clothing, physically sitting the student down on a nearby bench.

“Principal Winter, who was now standing over Student 1, looks down at Student 1 before he lifted his foot and stomped in on Student 1’s right foot causing them to immediately start weeping,” the documents stated.

The principal is then seen sitting down on the bench next to the student and putting his arms around the student’s shoulders, according to the documents.

Two other students witnessed the interaction and reported it to their teacher, according to the documents.

The president of the school’s PTA, Amy Haddad, told WTOP on Monday that Winter has been on leave from the school since February, but no one knew why until now.

“I think what’s been frustrating is the lack of clear, straightforward communication throughout this process,” Haddad said.

In a letter sent to parents Friday, Montgomery County Public Schools Assistant Superintendent Sean McGee wrote that Winter will not be returning to the school.

A PTA meeting is set for 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the school regarding the search and selection for a new principal.

“We would like to thank you for your patience through this transition and also with the changes of the assistant principal position. We understand that changes to school leadership and personnel can be difficult and we apologize for any confusion that this has caused,” McGee wrote in the letter.

WTOP’s Jack Moore contributed to this report.

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Kyle Cooper

Weekend and fill-in anchor Kyle Cooper has been with WTOP since 1992. Over those 25 years, Kyle has worked as a street reporter, editor and anchor. Prior to WTOP, Kyle worked at several radio stations in Indiana and at the Indianapolis Star Newspaper.

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