A Virginia mother is facing felony charges for allegedly placing a recorder in her 9-year-old daughter’s backpack to capture bullying.
Speaking with WAVY, Sarah Sims claimed that her daughter was being relentlessly tormented at Ocean View Elementary—and emails and phone calls about the issue were going unanswered. Fed up, the mother said she wanted to prove that nobody was helping the fourth-grader and decided to take matters into her own hands.
“If I’m not getting an answer from you what am I left to do?” she said.
Sims said she planted the recorder on her daughter in late September to hear what was going on in the classroom firsthand. Instead, the recorder was located and the 9-year-old was moved to a new classroom.
A month ago, police charged her with use of a device to intercept oral communication—a felony.
“I was mortified,” she told the local station. “The next thing I know I’m a felon.”
“Felony charges and a misdemeanor when I’m trying to look out for my kid. What do you do?”
WAVY reported that Sims was also charged with misdemeanor contributing to the delinquency of a minor. She faces five years behind bars.
The Norfolk School district declined to comment about the incident, citing an ongoing investigation. But WAVY reporters claimed they were told that electronic devices are prohibited in elementary schools.
Her attorney, Kristin Paulding, said she doesn’t believe the charges will hold up. The New York Daily News reported that Paulding and Sims claimed they haven’t been able to see if anything was captured on the recorder.
Sims’ preliminary hearing is scheduled for January 18.
[Featured Image: Sarah Sims/WAVY video screenshot]