School principal indicted after altercation with reporter
WASHINGTON, D.C.–After a controversial investigation, a District grand jury in mid-December indicted school principal Mary A.T. Anigbo and three other staff members on charges of misdemeanor assault following an incident at the Marcus Garvey Public Charter School in Washington in early December. The school officials are scheduled to be arraigned on Jan. 10.
Anigbo and the staff members are accused of assaulting Washington Times reporter Susan Ferrechio and photographer Cliff Owen as well as two D.C. police officers.
The incident occurred when Ferrechio went to the school to research a story, according to Ferrechio. Anigbo allegedly took her notebook, and later claimed that the reporter had taken the legal pad from her office, which Ferrechio denies. A scuffle ensued and Ferrechio was ousted from the building. Later, when Ferrechio returned with Owen and police officers to identify the alleged assailants, they were jostled by staff members and Owen’s camera was taken, according to the Washington Times and the police department.
Anigbo and her attorney, Veronice Holt, told The Washington Post that Ferrechio and the police were the aggressors in the episode and that the ensuing charges were racially based. Ferrechio is white and Anigbo is black. Anigbo refused to testify during the grand jury investigation on the grounds that she is the target of an unfair probe, according to The Washington Post, and Holt maintains that the incident has been blown out of proportion and that the prosecution and grand jury are a farce. (D.C. v. Anigbo, et al.)