Florida school investigates report that teacher drowned raccoons

OCALA, Fla. (AP/WSVN) — An agriculture teacher at a Florida high school has been removed from the classroom as school officials investigate whether he drowned raccoons in front of students.

The Ocala Star Banner reports that Forest High School teacher Dewie Brewton was placed on administrative leave pending the outcome of an investigation into whether he drowned “nuisance animals” in class.

“My son stood in the background, hid his phone and watched as they filled these trash cans full of water, and held these raccoons down in trash cans in the cages,” said one parent, who did not want to be identified. “I was disgusted. At first, I was in shock, of course, but I watched the video, and it’s horrific. It’s disgusting, and I can’t believe it happened at school.”

A Marion County School District spokesman says the district had received statements from witnesses that multiple animals were drowned in front of students because the animals were a nuisance to the agriculture program at the school.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission also is investigating to see whether any laws were broken.

The school district is looking into the incident as well, releasing a statement saying, “While law enforcement tells us the teacher may not have done anything illegal, his actions before students are certainly questionable.”

According to the school’s website, Brewton has been the school’s agriculture-education adviser since 2006.

Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.