Norfolk teacher accused of abuse faces criminal charges


NORFOLK, VA (WAVY) — A Bay View Elementary School special education teacher is facing charges after police say she assaulted a student.

Marshe Dunaway, 41, is facing two misdemeanor assault charges, according to Sgt. William D. Pickering Jr.

She is also currently on leave from her position with the school.

According to an investigation report from Norfolk Police, the mother of one of Dunaway’s students “regularly complained of physical abuse” at the hands of Dunaway.

The alleged incidents happened between Sept. 4 2018 and June 3, 2019. The police report says the incident alleged happened at the school, at 1434 E. Bayview Boulevard in Norfolk.

The school was notified of the incident. Child Protective Services is also involved, the police report said.

Dunaway spoke to 10 On Your Side over the phone and denied all claims against her.

On Nov. 19, Norfolk Public Schools released a statement detailing other accusations against Dunaway that prompted an investigation by Child Protective Services and the Department of Student Support Services this November.

Norfolk schools gave a timeline of the case thus far:

  • Oct. 2: A parent met with the principal and assistant principal regarding her concerns related to alleged physical contact in the classroom on the previous day.
  • Oct. 2: Later in the day, the parent also contacted the special education teacher specialist via phone regarding a second incident with the same teacher.
  • Oct. 3: The special education teacher contacted Child Protective Services about the two alleged incidents.
  • Oct. 4: The Department of Student Support Services began the process for an internal investigation.
  • Oct. 8: Child Protective Services came to the school to begin an investigation.
  • Oct. 15: Human Resources was notified of the allegations.
  • Oct. 16: The teacher was put on administrative leave.

The school division said its protocol requires those incidents to be immediately reported to Human Resources, but protocol was not followed during the case in October — resulting in the teacher not being immediately placed on leave.

“Consequently, the Acting Superintendent has addressed this breach of protocol with the responsible administrators. Further, at an upcoming division-wide principals meeting, the notification protocol will once again be reviewed and reinforced,” a school division spokeswoman said Nov. 19.

The parents who brought the claims of abuse include Lorraine Traylor.

“She bit him. She slapped him. She pushed him… She hit his head on his desk. She slammed him into the desk. So many different things,” Traylor said.

Traylor showed WAVY News pictures of Jakari after the alleged abuse and allowed us to interview him.

“Miss ‘She [Marshe] beat me with her own hand,” Jakari said.

“I just wish someone had listened, because that way it would have helped the next child out, and they would have believed my child, and believed me,” Traylor said.

Traylor says she complained last school year about what happened to Jakari. When she heard another child had been abused this year, it was then that school officials realized proper protocol had not been followed in removing a teacher accused of abuse.

“She was allowed to stay in the class last year, and this year… That’s what led to two weeks later her getting taken out of the school,” she said.

Dunaway was hired in August 2001 and her salary is $61,400, according to the school division.

WAVY News spoke to Dunaway from her home. She would not do an interview, but tearfully denied the claims against her over the phone.

“I deny all these claims, all the charges. You don’t know what it’s like to be accused of things by people who simply don’t like you. None of it is true,” she said, adding she would say nothing more until she consults with an attorney.

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