Saturday, February 24, 2018
Public safety

Principal at Coleman Middle, wife arrested on child abuse charge

By ANASTASIA DAWSON AND JONATHAN CAPRIEL

Times Staff Writers

TAMPA — The two punches to the child’s rib cage left bruises, a detective wrote, and were later followed by a written threat: Text the coach again about "needing to talk," it said, and "you’ll end up with a lot more than a few bruised ribs."

It’s no case of school bullying.

Rather, a South Tampa school principal and his wife have been charged with child abuse.

Coleman Middle School principal Michael Lynn Hoskinson, 53, was arrested about 9 p.m. Monday at the couple’s home in the 3200 block of Wallcraft Ave. Kimberly Hoskinson, 49, an assistant teacher at Plant High School, was taken into custody five hours earlier at the Tampa Police Department.

Arrest reports say the abuse was a domestic violence incident involving a relative. The Hoskinsons were each charged with a third-degree felony: child abuse without great bodily harm. The victim’s age and gender were not made public.

A detective wrote that at 12:30 a.m. on Nov. 2, Michael Hoskinson punched the victim twice using his fist. In addition to bruising, the impact caused the victim to fall and injure a wrist, the report stated. Kimberly Hoskinson pushed the child and both adults yelled at the child during the confrontation, the detective wrote.

"The injuries were observed by two other classmates," the report states.

A week later, on Friday, Kimberly Hoskinson sent the child a text message that said: "Friendly Reminder: If we ever find a text similar to the one you sent Coach [last name redacted from arrest report] a few months ago about ‘needing to talk,’ or to whoever else, you’ll end up with a lot more than a few bruised ribs," the arrest report said.

Michael Hoskinson has been principal of Coleman since 2006 and joined the Hillsborough County School District in 1987.

His wife worked at Plant during the 2013-2014 school year and returned to a full time position in July 2016.

The Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office has opened a child protection investigation into the couple, a spokeswoman for the Department of Children and Families said Tuesday.

School district spokeswoman Tanya Arja said neither Hoskinson has been the subject of a previous investigation or complaint. She said the district’s office of professional standards is working closely with Tampa police.

"We are shocked by this arrest," she said in a statement.

Area superintendent Lisa Yost met with students and staff at Coleman Middle School on Tuesday, Arja said. The school district also sent counselors to both schools to discuss the arrests with staff and students.

"Our number one priority is the safety and well being of our students and we will ensure they have all of the resources they need to get through this difficult time," the statement said.

Michael Hoskinson is paid $108,935 as principal of Coleman, a school with 930 students at 1724 S Manhattan Ave.

His bail was set Tuesday morning at $7,500 and his wife’s at $2,000. Both had been released by day’s end.

Word of the arrests spread quickly at Plant High School, with students sharing the booking photos on Snapchat.

Isabella Mena, 16, a junior, said she couldn’t believe the charges. Michael Hoskinson was her principal at Coleman and his wife served as a substitute teacher in a few of Mena’s classes.

"She was very chill," Mena said. "Everybody loved them."

Sarah Lozano, 16, a junior at Plant, said Kimberly Hoskinson had been kind in class. "She never got angry," Lozano said.

Parents who picked up their children at Coleman said Michael Hoskinson would guide the children at the cross walk every day.

"He’s a great guy and I feel for him," said Brandy Fishman, who has twins at Coleman.

"People are quick to judge, but he’s a human being. He would never lay a hand on any of the students. I feel for him so much."

News researcher Caryn Baird and staff writers Sara DiNatale and Christopher O’Donnell contributed to this report.

Comments
Police: Male motorcyclist crashed, then the driver was run over by two cars

Police: Male motorcyclist crashed, then the driver was run over by two cars

TAMPA — A male motorcyclist died early Saturday morning on the Courtney Campbell Causeway, the Tampa Police Department said.About 1:35 a.m., the victim rode his motorcycle west on the Courtney Campbell at high speeds, police said. The motorcycle stru...
Updated: 9 minutes ago
Broward sheriff’s office launches internal investigations amid questions after Parkland massacre

Broward sheriff’s office launches internal investigations amid questions after Parkland massacre

The Broward County Sheriff’s Office said it is investigating allegations that multiple deputies failed to enter Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, after the shooting rampage there, adding to the mounting internal probes examin...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Police: Registered sex offender who attacked Marriott hotel worker arrested

Police: Registered sex offender who attacked Marriott hotel worker arrested

TAMPA — A registered sex offender was arrested early Saturday morning by Tampa Police in connection with a hotel worker who was attacked earlier this week, the department said.John Eckhard, 41, was arrested about 1:30 a.m. on charges of aggravated ba...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Parents accused of torturing their 13 children face new charges

Parents accused of torturing their 13 children face new charges

The 13 Turpin siblings gained their freedom last month after one of them escaped through a window and called 911, ending years of imprisonment under parents accused of starving and chaining them to their beds in a putrid home not far from Los Angeles...
Updated: 3 hours ago
Concerned about gun posts, dad turns in son’s phones. Cops find something else.

Concerned about gun posts, dad turns in son’s phones. Cops find something else.

After the Parkland school shooting that horrified the nation, a Miami father told police he was worried about his son’s disturbing posts with guns on Instagram and Snapchat.So he gave investigators his son’s smartphones — and they found child porn, c...
Updated: 5 hours ago
Trump processes Fla. students’ grief as president, parent

Trump processes Fla. students’ grief as president, parent

WASHINGTON — Once again, it was the images of children that propelled President Donald Trump to act. Trump spent the first days after the Feb. 14 school shooting in Florida fixated on the grieving and anguished students and parents. While at his Flor...
Updated: 7 hours ago
Gun legislation unease looms over Tampa gun show attendees, vendors

Gun legislation unease looms over Tampa gun show attendees, vendors

TAMPA — Hundreds lined up minutes after one of the state’s biggest gun shows opened its doors Saturday morning at the Florida State Fairgrounds.About 400 people from the entrance stood Austin Nichols, a 19-year-old looking to get a deal on bullets. H...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Restricting bullets rather than guns might cut toll of school shootings, some experts say

Restricting bullets rather than guns might cut toll of school shootings, some experts say

This is the sad new math in the age of school slaughter. If one student comes to school with a firearm and 10 ammunition magazines filled with 30 bullets each, and another comes with a firearm and 30 magazines filled with 10 bullets each, who can cr...
Published: 02/23/18
Sheriff: Small plane goes down in Zephyrhills

Sheriff: Small plane goes down in Zephyrhills

ZEPHYHRHILLS — A small aircraft crashed along Old Lakeland Highway on Friday afternoon, according to the Pasco County Sheriff’s Office.Deputies believe the plane was a two-seater.No other information was available about the incident, including the id...
Published: 02/23/18
Tampa judge sentences man to 330 years after repeat trips to the Philippines to have sex with children and make child porn

Tampa judge sentences man to 330 years after repeat trips to the Philippines to have sex with children and make child porn

TAMPA — A Venice man convicted of producing child pornography and regularly traveling to the Philippines to have sex with children was sentenced Friday to spend 330 years in federal prison. In October, a federal jury found David Paul Lynch, 56, guilt...
Published: 02/23/18