A former Paudling County, Ga., teacher who began choking an eighth-grader as he tried to leave her classroom did not violate the 14-year-old boy’s civil rights, a federal appellate panel has ruled.

Although Amber Baker, a remedial reading teacher, grabbed eighth-grader Jonathon Peterson by the throat hard enough to leave bruises, her action did not rise to the level of “unconstitutionally excessive” corporal punishment, a panel of the 11th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals in Atlanta said in an opinion released Oct. 25.

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