Odessa Mother Says Zavala Elementary Made Big Mistake

By Wyatt Goolsby
NewsWest 9

ODESSA - An Odessa Mother got out of jail Wednesday fuming mad. She claims she ended up behind bars because Zavala Elementary didn't follow the rules. She said the big conflict all started when staff members at Zavala let her son go home with someone who wasn't on the official list. And because of that mistake she had to fight to get her son back, and claims she has the scars to prove it.

"If the school would have never done that, my son would have thrown up, they would have called the right people that were on the paperwork, but they didn't do that," explained Wendy Lugo.

Lugo said she's shocked staff members at Zavala Elementary didn't follow any of the set standards for letting her child leave school. She said it all happened Monday around lunch time. That's when her 5-year-old son's grandmother came to have lunch with him. Nothing wrong with that, except what happened afterwards.

"And he started throwing up, and that's when they took him to the nurses' office and from the nurses' office, they let him go with her. And she's apparently the one that signed him out," said Lugo.

But that's not how it's supposed to work.

"In this case, is it just happened so quickly," said Mike Adkins, with Ector County ISD. "What should have happened is we should have checked immediately on the child's card, is this grandmother on the card able to check the child out and take the child home."

So, the grandmother took him to her home, the same home as the son's father.

"You just run for your kid, especially if someone tells you he's sick and we have him, you know the first thing that comes to my head is why, you know why, you know, why do they have him, you know he's sick?" asked Lugo.

From there, she said, a fight broker out between Lugo and her ex-husband's relatives.

"She grabbed me like that from my face this way, and I guess that's where I got one of these marks right here, and that's when she shrugged me and pushed me out of the way," said Lugo.

Lugo said the police only arrested her, and charged her with assault. But she said none of it would have happened if the Zavala staff and just done their job.

"Nobody feels worse about this happening than the staff at the school, because they value those kids and they want to do everything they can to protect them, and they are just sick that this happened. And unfortunately, it's a reminder, that we have those procedures in place for a reason, and they need to be followed, and we need to be real diligent in checking on that anytime somebody comes to check out a child," explained Adkins.

Lugo said her son has not gone back to school since Monday. Since she got out of jail Wednesday, she is still in talks with her lawyers about what she is going to do next. Honestly, she said this whole situation has been very emotional for her and her family.