Zachary Councilman Lael Montgomery holds rally to call for resignation of principal following teacher arrest

Zachary Councilman Lael Montgomery holds rally to call for resignation of principal following teacher arrest
Zachary City Councilman Lael Montgomery holds rally in Zachary, La., on Feb. 11, 2019, a demanding the firing or resignation of Northwestern Middle School principal Debby Brian after a teacher was accused of having a sexual relationship with a student. (Source: WAFB)

ZACHARY, La. (WAFB) - Zachary Councilman Lael Montgomery was joined by the Baton Rouge chapter of the NAACP and community supporters on Tuesday, Feb. 11 to demand Northwestern Middle School principal Debby Brian resign or be removed.

WAFB’s Lester Duhé reports around 100 people showed up to the rally that was held right across the street from Northwestern Middle School.

The rally came just under a week after the arrest of Ellarea Silva. Silva was charged for an alleged sexual relationship with a student at the school, according to officials.

Sources confirm Ellarea Silva, a teacher at Northwestern Middle School in Zachary, has just turned herself in to be booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison.
Sources confirm Ellarea Silva, a teacher at Northwestern Middle School in Zachary, has just turned herself in to be booked into East Baton Rouge Parish Prison. (Source: EBRSO)

“If you molest a kid, I’m turning you in. Brother, sister, cousin, it don’t matter. I will not protect them. Let me tell you something, state police, I’m begging you to come and investigate this. I’m begging you. There are more kids,” Montgomery said during the rally.

Montgomery and Brian sparred publically over comments about the alleged relationship made by Montgomery.

More: Zachary teacher placed on leave; principal emails councilman saying student possibly ‘lost their innocence’

Councilman Montgomery and the NAACP are calling for Principal Brian to step down after police arrested one of her teachers, Ellarea Silva, for allegedly having sexual relations with a student.

“Mrs. Debby, no one should have to ask you to resign. You should step down for what happened on your watch,” said Eugene Collins, president of the NAACP Baton Rouge Chapter.

Many came to support Councilman Montgomery, who has been very outspoken about the case on social media, and drew criticism from the principal last week.

"Debby, you got to go. Your leadership is not allowed. You only get one strike to mess up with our kids. This ain't baseball baby, it's real life," said Montgomery.

He and others also want outside agencies to join the investigation.

"State Police, I'm begging you to come and investigate this. I'm begging you. There are more kids. I have inbox messages telling me there are more kids," said Councilman Montgomery.

However, at a press conference Monday, Feb. 10, Zachary Police Chief David McDavid said there’s only one victim at this time.

Also, Zachary Schools Superintendent Scoot Devillier said Principal Brian is here to stay.

"I'm going to stand behind my employees 100%, until I have a reason, or we have a reason to do something different, and I hadn't seen that," said Devillier.

A prayer service also took place at a park right next to city hall after the rally for people to come together and try to bridge the gap within the community.

“I didn’t think we had division until recently. It [prayer service] wasn’t a response to that at all. I feel like more people were hurt in this. There was disappointment, betrayal. Children were affected, and I think it was just time or us all to come together and take it to God,” said Zachary Councilwoman Laura O’Brien.

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