2023-08-04 | The Devil Made Me Do It

I was sick of the lies. I couldn’t believe my eyes. They were trying it again!

They acted like something we both know happened didn’t happen. Then they acted like I hadn’t asked my question the right way.

The gaslight consumed me. I grew dizzy and for a minute, I thought it must have been my mistake. I must have misunderstood. I must have asked wrong.

I sent their reply to my friend. She noticed the firm wording around a specific date and advised me to reword my request with “on or around” and I replied “Ok.”

I thought I had. But judging by their carefully worded reply, I must not have.

So when I got back to my computer, I pulled out the old email so I could reference my original request, and there it was, already worded that way.

Right there, side by side, the contradicting information smacks me in the face. I can feel my blood pressure rush to new highs. THEY ARE PLAYING GAMES AGAIN AND WE CAUGHT THEM!

As if overcome by an out-of-body experience, still wet from having just come in from securing the boat to brace for a sudden thunderstorm, but noticing it’s moments away from the 4:30 PM work-day cutoff on a Friday, I sit down with a screencapture of this evidence and compose my reply:

Thank you for this information,

My request was for an incident on “or about April 17, 2023,” not specifically that date, as your response indicates.

Lacking any other way to reference it than “the incident best described as a Black elementary school student being placed in a chokehold by a white male FRYSC, resulting in a situation very much resembling a George Floyd/Derek Chauvin situation, (except this is a child in this educator’s care, and he is required by law to be placed there!)” I ask if you wouldn’t mind clarifying your response, since it appears to be at odds with a previous response I received from you.

In an earlier response, you acknowledged the incident took place (see screenshot below).

Your most recent response seems to deny an incident even took place.

So I ask you again,

Can you please confirm that there was an incident that fits the above description that is currently pending the results of an internal investigation, and also confirm that you will have something to share with the public once the investigation is complete. Can you also offer an approximate date I should check back?

The reason I ask again so soon is because 1) I’ve heard it had possibly been resolved recently and I’m not sure how else to know when his file is finally updated than to check back, and 2) because school starts again soon and parents, children and the community deserve to be forewarned if this man who represents a dangerous threat to some of their children will be returning to their building.

Mandatory reporters have assured me there should be video evidence of this child gasping for air and saying “I can’t breathe” before collapsing on the floor and coughing up phlegm upon regaining consciousness. If you cannot provide the video now due to the ongoing investigation, please consider this a request to preserve it for release to public or for taxpayers’ legal purposes in the future. Thank you.

When you consider the number of other offenses this man has been investigated for prior to and even after this Spring 2023 incident, I have to question what standards are being used to determine who gets removed and who is allowed to stay/return when abuses of children are discovered to have taken place. I hope race, gender and even disability, are not going to have been an undeniable factor in hindsight, but I suspect they already are. Someone really should look into that.

To top it off, we are discovering some complaints against him were NEVER reported or investigated. I believe this to be true because one incident I myself reported via the fraud hotline on your website does not appear to be in his file. How can I find out what happened to my complaint? Who else should I ask? My board member? The media?

This is not the first incident whistleblowers have tried to sound the alarm on abuses of Black children at this school by white caregivers, only to experience retaliation, retribution, harassment, demotions and assassination of character, myself included. Wouldn’t it be a travesty to knowingly allow such behaviors to continue to be permitted in this mostly Black, historically impacted and marginalized community?

Sorry if my message is terse. Any tone taken is not directed at you, but at the system that we are all caught up in.

I look forward to your reply.


I hit send at 4:28 PM and left my mark. The universe will not be able to deny this record exists as a historical marker in time. And neither will they, as I blind copied a board member, two members of the media and a Black, female witness. More are being copied with this post. Boom. Let’s see what comes from that concoction. And if any of my email is incorrect, I sincerely apologize, but so far, no one has come forth to advise me of such.

I’m sick of the lies. I’m sick of having to constantly parent them and nothing ever happens. They are the devil. And they made me this way. The devil made me do it.

Below is the email I sent Friday afternoon and part of the thread that led up to it.

RE_ Custis Follow Up Request

The second PDF is the exchange that forced me to describe the evidence of a handwritten note in more detail the first time I pushed back on their evasive language and prompted an admission that the incident was indeed being investigated. It’s the entire thread from which the screenshot in the reply was taken.

If you’re as sick of it as I am, join Dear JCPS Exclusives and help us chart a course toward the future. Requirements to join. Please answer the questions. Thank you for your patience.