13-year-old Ethan Chaplin of Vernon, New Jersey was allegedly removed from school for twirling his pencil around. A classmate claimed he was spinning the writing utensil like a gun.
“He was kind of twirling his pencil, looking at the teacher,” said Michael Chaplin, Ethan’s father. “And the child behind him blurts out, in the middle of class, ‘He’s making gun motions, send him to (juvenile detention!)’”
School officials backed off after the local media started reporting on the extreme reaction by the school but child protection agencies never let up even threatening to take Ethan and put him up for adoption.
Ethan’s father received disturbing information from New Jersey’s Department of Child Protection and Permanency and Department of Children and Families.
“I received a letter from them saying they had found an incident of abuse or neglect regarding Ethan because I refused to take him for psychological evaluation,” Michael said.
The local school district would not allow Ethan back to school until he cleared through a psychological evaluation. Ethan was then investigated by a social worker, which both Ethan and his father claim involved going to the crisis center of a hospital, being admitted for hours, having blood drawn and meeting with a social worker. The end results showed no behavioral problem existing.
The state, however, has disregarded these results and is demanding additional evaluation and threatening that if Michael doesn’t comply, they will terminate his parental rights and free Ethan up for adoption.
“All I can do is keep fighting, keep telling the truth and (keep) presenting the evidence. That is all I can do and hopefully the state does the right thing,” Michael said.
Michael Chaplin has even reached out to Governor Chris Christie’s office, who replied they would contact the Dept. of Children and Families to investigate.
“…I’m scared because they have a habit of running away with things unchecked and that’s exactly what’s going on,” Michael said.
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