Video shows school employee lift student off ground by neck

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RANKIN, Pa. -- A Pennsylvania school employee is accused of picking up a student by the neck twice.

Surveillance video inside Rankin Promise School shows 50-year-old Joseph Golden III picking a 13-year-old boy off the ground, WTAE reports. Golden is a behavioral specialist at the school, which is an education program for students with academic and behavior issues.

“The kid didn't go to the hospital. He didn't go to the doctors. He told the principal he wasn't hurt. This isn't a simple assault," attorney Patrick Thomassey said. "We have to have some discipline in school. It's why we have these officers, that's their job, to maintain order.”

Thomassey said the boy repeatedly walked out of class in the hours leading up to the altercation and Golden accompanied him back to class each time.

Woodland Hills School District Superintendent Alan Johnson released a statement on the incident:

"It was a terrible incident. We’re very upset about it. We have begun the process to terminate the employee. He was removed immediately from the school."

Golden faces charges of assault and endangering the welfare of a child. As of Thursday, he was still on suspension.