Classmate sets girl's hair on fire and returns to school

Boy accused of lighting girl's hair on fire mistakenly sent back to class with her

DEKALB COUNTY, Ga. — A mother is furious that a teen who set her daughter's hair on fire is back in the class.

Jessica Connolly's daughter is in 10th grade at Lithonia High School. She told Channel 2’s Liz Artz she's worried for her child's safety after she said the boy lit her daughter's hair on fire in class.

“He was playing with a lighter and the whole classroom filled with smoke. The teacher put my daughter's hair out," Jessica Connolly said.

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According to the police report, Connolly said the teen was arrested and charged with reckless conduct causing harm, and was handcuffed and hauled off to the Dekalb County Jail.


“Bringing a lighter to school, causing bodily harm to someone, you don't belong back in Dekalb County schools," Connolly said.

The teen, she said, was gone for several weeks, but recently showed back up in her daughter's class.

“He was in the classroom with her and she felt uncomfortable, I kept my daughter out for four days," Connolly said.

At that time, Connolly said the school came up with a safety plan.

“Different hallways, different lunches, no contact with this boy, she would not see him. Did that happen?" Artz asked.

“That happened for four or five days," Connolly said.

Connolly told Artz that the boy is back in the classroom, and intimidating her daughter.

“He went up to her, (said), 'I burnt your hair,' then what? Does she feel threatened by him?" asked Artz.

“She felt very threatened by him," Connolly said.

Connolly believes if the district isn't going to remove the teen from the school, he should at least be taken out of her daughter’s class.

“They can't keep my daughter safe from him being there," Connolly said.