[UPDATE: The NYPD has issued a correction to clarify that Kenyatte Hughes is a volunteer band leader, not a city employee, as originally stated when the arrest was announced. This article has been updated accordingly.
A middle school band leader in Brooklyn was arrested yesterday after he allegedly used duct tape to tape a 9-year-old student's mouth shut. Kenyatte Hughes, 39, volunteers leading a marching band at Intermediate School 292 in East New York. Details about the incident are still emerging, but the NYPD says the student sustained a laceration to his lips and swelling to both sides of his face as a result of the duct taping.
Hughes, whose father was formerly the school's principal, is charged with assault, endangering the welfare of a child, and criminal possession of a weapon. He was reportedly arrested after the boy's parents learned of the incident and complained.
The acclaimed marching band, called the "Soul Tigers," was previously featured in a Tommy Hilfiger ad and and have performed for Mariah Carey. In January, the Daily News reported that Hughes had clashed with IS 292's interim principal, and that the 60-member band had been denied access to its rehearsal space. “To me, this is nonsense,” Hughes said at the time. “It’s not like the school is providing other means of music.”
Update 10:50 a.m.: Department of Education spokesperson Devora Kaye said in a statement, "This is not a DOE employee. Mr. Hughes has been a volunteer at an afterschool program at IS 292. These charges are deeply troubling, and Mr. Hughes will no longer be allowed in IS 292 or any of our schools."