Ryan Avery Fish, 23, told police he only wanted to be liked by the students. “I’m an idiot,” he said, according to his arrest warrant.
Fish, a former substitute math teacher, was arrested yesterday for encouraging students to participate in a “fight club” inside his Montville High School class, in Montville, Connecticut. He was seen in cell phone videos encouraging students as they slapped each other in his classroom.
Authorities charged Fish with two counts of risk of injury to a minor, one count of breach of peace and four counts of second-degree reckless endangerment. Fish’s bail was set at $75,000 and he was arraigned in Norwich Superior Court on Thursday.
Authorities discovered the high school had known about the “fight club” since October 10 after cell phone videos of the fights began spreading around campus. He was subsequently fired by the school, and when confronted by the school’s senior officials said, “Boys will be boys.”
Last December, the Montville Police Department got involved when someone from the Department of Children and Families told them that one of their students showed “real and identifiable symptoms of having been traumatized.”
Authorities then began investigating the report and discovered that the one-on-one fights happened “under the direct supervision” of the former substitute math teacher. Fish admitted to police that, starting in September, three or four scheduled fights were held between four boys, aged between 14 and 16. Cell phone evidence proves at least two of the fights.
According to the warrant, one student vomited during one of the fights and another was sent to hospital after he showed symptoms of trauma in December. It is unclear whether any of the victims suffered serious physical injuries.
“The truth is I’m an idiot and wanted to befriend them,” Fish said, according to the warrant. “I’m immature.”