Booker High teacher placed on leave during investigation into battery

Font Size:
Default font size
Larger font size

Posted: Thursday, May 16, 2013 12:46 pm | Updated: 5:46 pm, Thu Oct 3, 2013.

SARASOTA, FL. - A Booker High School teacher has been placed on paid administrative leave pending an investigation into battery.

The Sarasota Police Department is looking into a claim a student made against Doug O'Connell, who teaches science at the school.

Officers say it's a simple battery case, which is a misdemeanor.

According to Booker High's Principal, she received a complaint about O'Connell on April 12th and she reported it to authorities the same day as a precaution.

The 43-year-old was placed on leave three days later. He is now working in the human resources office at the Sarasota County School District's headquarters.

School district officials say O'Connell is accused of inappropriate conduct with a student.

A former student of O'Connell's says she can't believe he's done anything wrong. “That's not Mr. O'Connell. That's not something Mr. O’Connell would do. It's kind of crazy,” says Krystal Davis.

The investigation is ongoing and details in this case have not been released yet.

The state's Office of Professional Practices, which can revoke a teacher's license, is investigating as well.

O'Connell has worked for the district since August 2001.

Rules of Conduct

  • 1 Keep it Clean. Please avoid obscene, vulgar, lewd, racist or sexually-oriented language.
  • 2 Don't Threaten or Abuse. Threats of harming another person will not be tolerated. AND PLEASE TURN OFF CAPS LOCK.
  • 3 Be Truthful. Don't knowingly lie about anyone or anything.
  • 4 Be Nice. No racism, sexism or any sort of -ism that is degrading to another person.
  • 5 Be Proactive. Use the 'Report' link on each comment to let us know of abusive posts.
  • 6 Share with Us. We'd love to hear eyewitness accounts, the history behind an article.

Welcome to the discussion.


  • gardenme posted at 6:51 pm on Thu, Oct 3, 2013.

    gardenme Posts: 1

    I have worked with him in the past, and I put nothing past him.

  • psactampa posted at 1:09 pm on Thu, May 16, 2013.

    psactampa Posts: 1

    We hope Mr. O'Connell is treated fairly. We hope the complainant feels that the way it gets handled is adequate. It sounds like the Principal did the right thing. What strikes us as most interesting is the former student's comment that it is "...not something [he] would do." With all due respect to Krystal Davis's radar regarding these kinds of things, some- SOME- people spend a lifetime trying to fool people. We think we can tell who would do it, but we can't.



Send your photos & videos to and you could be featured on ABC 7 & our website.