Assault Charges Dropped: Mom Wants Answers

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DES MOINES, Iowa -- The Polk County Attorney's Office dismissed charges today against a Hubbell Elementary School teacher.  Anita Babe was accused of assaulting a 12-year-old special needs student on two occasions last April.

The mother of that student, Kristi Langford claims Babe left 4-inch bruises on her son's arms.

"Anita Babe has been pulling Dakota out of chairs yanking him into chairs, yanking him out, sometimes grabbing him by the neck and escorting him down the hallway."

An investigation by the Des Moines School District came to the same conclusion.  But Langford says prosecutors told her this week that the charges would be dismissed because "police did not investigate it properly."

Des Moines Police Spokesperson, Sgt. Jason Halifax says there was a thorough investigation.

"When we filed charges we had probable cause to file charges and we actually ran the case through a county attorney who approved the charges."

A spokesperson for the Des Moines School District says Babe is on administrative leave, but would not comment further, saying it's a personnel matter.

Langford says when she picked her son up from school on April 10, he was shaking uncontrollably.

"As we were driving home I asked him why is he shaking and he said, Anita keeps squeezing his arms and pulling him down and yanking him out of chairs."

Langford noticed the bruises on his arms the following day and took pictures of the marks.  Five days later, Langford says Babe assaulted her son again.

Witnesses told the District's investigator that "Babe has a terrible temper and has been known to use physical force on students."  The report also says Babe has been warned about speaking sarcastically to students, "especially those she is not fond of."

Langford says she's concerned about her son and other students, should Babe return to the classroom.

"I don`t know what we can do.  It's so sad because there's a chance now that she's going to be able to go back to the schools and start teaching again and I have a very bad feeling that this is going to happen again to another child."

Neither the Polk County Attorney or Babe's attorney returned our phone calls.

Langford says her son is not the same.  She home schools him because she says he's afraid to go to school and afraid of teachers.  She says he's also seeing a counselor for emotional trauma.  As a result, she may sue the District.

“The school knew.  The school knew that this has been going on. Teachers have been talking and reporting this to the principal."



  • chrisbet4

    I do not understand, if they have witnesses that say she does this, why are the charges being dropped?! I work with special needs kiddos and no one with this type of temperament should be allowed in any classroom!

  • Troy Hendrickson

    The Polk County Attorney was either paid to drop the charges, or the defendant has connections that asked the charges be dropped. The question is, why Polk County citizens are willing to put up with such a corrupt prosecutor in the first place.

    • tammy

      Exactly Troy! Sarah, u don’t go to jail for assult if there was no assult! She got arrested for this abuse! However… it was incorrectly investigated which thru it out of court! NOT BECAUSE SHE’S INNOCENT! SOON EVERYONE WILL KNOW WHO THIS WOMAN IS & THEY WILL KNOW SHE IS A CHILD ABUSER & BULLY!

  • Sara Williams

    Chargers were dropped because they were bogus from the beginning. She was railroaded and falsely accused. If there’s a suit filed I hope Anita is the one suing. She should be reinstated immediately.

      • tammy

        Apparently Sara is good friends w miss ‘babe’! But there is a thin line between right & wrong & this bully was very wrong to do these things to this child! & the others! Ur on the wrong side of the line here…:( Sad sad sad!

      • chrisbet4

        Jane – this child has an associate for a reason! He probably has an IEP or 504. These are specific plans of how things will be handled in different situations and also academic plans. These plans are put into place because what works for other children will NOT work for this child. If the plan is not followed, chaos will probably happen. These are also legal documents. I do the same job this woman did. I also have children with Autism Spectrum Disorders. Many times, If the parents are called to the school every time one of these children has a problem, they will lose their jobs! It is the job of the associate and the special education teacher to work together to handle these situations. There should NEVER be a time when a child comes home with bruised.

  • LKM

    Another case of “who you know” in the legal system in Iowa. Just like the woman who wasn’t charged for leaving her child in the car and he/she died of heat exhaustion.

  • Troy Hendrickson

    “Authorities in Iowa are trying to decide whether to file charges against a hospital CEO whose 7-month-old daughter died after being accidentally left in a minivan while she rushed off to attend meetings.

    The county medical examiner has ruled the death accidental, but prosecutors have yet to decide whether to charge Kari Engholm over the death of her daughter Clare.”

    Other than Eric Branstad’s drunk driving murders, I can find no worse case of wealthy white privilege in Iowa.

  • erin

    This is exactly why parents of special needs kids do not trust the public school system. What if Dakota were non-verbal? If these bruises appeared on him and they suspected the parents of this abuse I am certain that they would be held responsible for it. Those bruises he suffered from were dark and deep. This woman should be punished and held accountable.

  • jane

    Tammy– you’re delusional! This is a family with a child ‘they’ can’t control. Neither parent wanted to come to the school when the child continued day in day out to disrupt classes. They couldn’t be bothered from their jobs. They wanted a school to raise their child. Fact– if this incident was ‘witnessed’ by a school employee and it wasn’t reported– case for firing. School employees are MANDATORY reporters, BUT it was the mom who took pictures of the bruises. This child also when questioned could not indicate who gave him the bruises, he changed his story multiple times of who and when these incidents took place this is why the DA did not get a case from the investigating officers. FACT!

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