The father of an elementary school student was arrested after he and two other men confronted a principal over his child being sent home after coming in contact with someone who tested positive for COVID-19.
The Daily Beast reports police were called to Mesquite Elementary School in Tucson on Thursday after Rishi Rambaran entered the campus and was aggressive toward Principal Diane Vargo. The 40-year-old father barged into Vargo’s office accompanied by two men, who she claims were holding “military, large, black zip ties and standing in my doorway.”
The three men threatened to perform a “citizen’s arrest” on the principal if Rambaran’s son, who was sent home after being exposed to a person who tested positive for coronavirus, was not allowed to return to school.
“[The father] was very upset and demanded that his son stay at school. And I said he can’t. We’re just following protocols. He had a phone in my face. He was telling me that there’s more people coming,” Vargo told USA Today. “Those two other men barged into my office and blocked my doorway, and one of the men had these large black zip ties in his hand, and the other man had a phone on me as well.”
School officials called the Tuscon Police Department, which arrived shortly after and arrested Rambaran.
“The principal through training and her own personality did an excellent job of making sure that tensions didn’t escalate,” District Superintendent John Carruth told the news outlet. “The tactics are escalating but I wouldn’t say there is a broader need to raise concern. The solution and the lesson and the silver lining in this (incident) is it calls attention to the need for all of us to seek to listen with the intent to understand.”