PICO RIVERA (CBS) — The Pico Rivera teacher accused of smacking one of his students upside the head is getting a lot of support — and from other students.

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Meanwhile, another student at El Rancho High sent us a picture of teacher Greg Salcido and the student, David Amparan. In the photo, the two look like close chums and mugging for the camera. “It’s a photo of two guys who like each other. There’s no doubt about that.”

Salcido says the picture indicates the two were friends. And the slap was nothing but an innocent and friendly gesture.  He admits to slapping the 15-year-old, who he said was sleeping, face down on his desk. He insists he gave him a playful slap to get his attention, not to hurt him.

Rob Schmitt, reporting for CBS2 and KCAL9, says Amparan’s mom, Shannon, had an entirely different reaction to the photo and said it doesn’t prove the teacher didn’t bully her son.”My son didn’t complain on a daily basis that this happened. But it happened occasionally.”

Shannon Amperan also held an anti-bullying rally in Pico Rivera Friday.

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And she believes the slap was completely inappropriate. She took the matter to police.

But many students support the teacher, including at least two who interrupted the rally.

Gabby De La Rosa also supports Salcido. She sent the picture to our newsroom. “I think that David and his family are blowing this whole situation out of proportion,” she said.

Schmitt says even students who support Salcido concede he has a sharp tongue. “I wouldn’t characterize it that way. I do have a different teaching style than most,” he explains. “I’m not saying my way is right — but I wouldn’t say it’s wrong.”

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