A 23-year-old substitute teacher was arrested last week for initiating a “fight club” in a Montville, Connecticut math classroom. There is cellphone video footage of Ryan Fish egging students to slap each other. His motive? He just wanted to be liked.
“I’m an idiot,” he told police on his arrest warrant, where he was charged with four counts of second-degree reckless endangerment, one count of breach of peace, and two counts of risk of injury to a minor. His bail was set at $75,000.
“I would let them be teenagers and get their energy out,” Fish said in a January police interview. “I will admit that I did at one point egg them on.” But Fish didn’t just egg the students on, he organized scheduled fights in the classroom. Three or four of these fights between boys 14 and 16 years old were held this past fall with Fish “supervising” them.
One of the students vomited during a fight, and another went to the hospital over injuries he sustained from the fight. School officials learned about the fight club on October 10 from photos and videos circulating around the school.
When they confronted Fish he told them “Boys will be boys.” He was promptly fired, but police did not learn of the “fight club” until mid-December when they received video footage of the authority sanctioned violence. They immediately launched an investigation that resulted in Fish’s arrest.