A 6-year-old girl was Baker Acted Thursday after officials said a school fight got out of control.
The Baker Act is a common term used for the Florida Mental Health Act of 1971, a statute that allows for the involuntary mental examination of an individual.
Christina Brinson says her daughter, Dy’asia, has had a tough time adjusting, as she has been dealing with a bully at Fairmount Park Elementary.
“I gave her permission to hit her back,” Brinson said.
Just last week, Dy’asia was given two written reprimands for her behavior by the school and was suspended on Tuesday and Wednesday.
On Thursday morning, the first-grader got into a fight with the bully that escalated into much more.
According to paperwork provided to Brinson by the school, a Pinellas County School District social worker felt the first-grader was so “out of control” that without treatment she was likely to cause serious bodily harm to herself and others.
So Thursday afternoon, Dy’asia was Baker Acted.
“She’s 6,” Brinson said. “How do you possibly send a child to a mental health clinic, at 6? What can she possibly do to be a threat to herself and others?”
The Baker Act allows for an involuntary mental health evaluation.
Dy’asia was taken by a St. Petersburg Police officer to PEM Mental Health Services. A doctor at the facility wrote comments in her file that said Dy’asia was “calm, cooperative and appropriate.”
Her mother was able to pick her up from the clinic Thursday evening.
The Pinellas County School District says the appropriate protocol and notification procedures were followed.
Also, officials say if a licensed mental health professional or a law enforcement officer determines that the Baker Act is necessary, they do not need a parent’s permission.
Asked if people should be scared of her, Dy’asia simply answered, “No.”
“Because I’m a nice girl,” Dy’asia said.