New Jersey's education commissioner has dismissed a tenured teacher who struck a special education student with a power cord four years ago.

Commissioner Christopher Cerf found video showed Errol Goodwater's actions were "cruel and vicious," leaving the 13-year-old student crying with a raised welt on his back.

The commissioner said the video contradicted the Camden middle school teacher's claim that he acted in self-defense and accidentally hit the boy.The teacher had told an administrative law judge that his students were "murderers, criminals and car thieves."

The teacher was acquitted of a criminal charge stemming from the incident.

Goodwater's lawyer, J. Michael Farrell, tells The Courier-Post of Cherry Hill (http://on.cpsj.com/LCVDFr ) the teacher can challenge the ruling before an appeals court.

(Copyright 2012 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)