Republican Kansas state Rep. Mark Samsel was arrested on Thursday in Wellsville, Kansas after allegations surfaced that he “put hands” on a male student and kneed him in the crotch, according to The Kansas City Star. Footage that was apparently taken after the altercation shows the student on the ground with Samsel standing over him and asking, “Did it hurt?”
The 36-year-old was subbing at a public school where he also went on religious tirades about suicide, masturbation, homosexuality, and more. In addition to misdemeanor battery, he has been prohibited from teaching in the Wellsville school district.
After he was released on a $1,000 bail, he took to Snapchat where he reportedly said that the incident “was all planned.” He continued, “Every little bit of it. That’s right. The kids and I planned ALL this to SEND A MESSAGE about art, mental health, teenage suicide, how we treat our educators and one another. To who? Parents. And grandparents. And all of Wellsville.”
Students shared recordings of Samsel’s rants and outrageous comments with the City Star, which included remarks about a student trying to commit suicide because his foster parents are lesbians: “He’s a foster kid. His alternatives in life were having no parents or foster care parents who are gay,” Samsel said. “How do you think I’m going to feel if he commits suicide? Awful.”
Also recorded were comments about masturbation: “Who likes making babies?” he asked in a video. “That feels good, doesn’t it? Procreate. … You haven’t masturbated? Don’t answer that question … God already knows.”
The school district is investigating the incident. Kansas State Rep. and House Speaker Ron Ryckman issued a statement, saying, “We’re not yet aware of the details and in the process of gathering as much information as we can.”