EDUCATION

George Kenney, Hypnotizing Principal, Allegedly Lied About Putting Students In Trance

06/30/2011 09:29 am ET | Updated Nov 15, 2011

A Florida high school principal defied school orders to stop hypnotizing students and lied about casting spells on two students who later committed suicide and another who perished in a car crash, according to a report.

Investigators found that North Port High School Principal George Kenney hypnotized up to 75 people, including students, staff and parents, the Sarasota Herald Tribune reported.

Kenney came under fire after student Wesley McKinley killed himself in April and his parents began questioning the one-on-one hypnosis sessions that took place weeks before their son died.

The report revealed that the principal had also hypnotized Brittany Palumbo five months before her May suicide. The report said that Kenney entranced Marcus Freeman twice in the weeks before the student died in an auto accident in March.

Earlier reports said Kenney performed hypnosis to help students focus in class. The school district permitted the principal to demonstrate hypnosis in front of groups in psychology class, but was unaware that he secretly had one-on-one sessions with students, according to ABC News

According to the new report, Kenney lied to school officials and investigators about his private hypnosis, but later confessed. HIs lawyer Mark Zimmerman said his client misspoke under questioning because of the stress.

The school district has denied there's any link between they hypnosis and suicides, ABC reported.

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