A group of black elementary school students in Ohio reportedly assaulted several white students on the playground last week when the kids refused to say, “Black Lives Matter.”
The alleged assaults happened at Kenwood Elementary School last Friday, although Springfield Police weren’t notified about the incident until Monday morning, according to the incident report.
The school’s principal, Evan Hunsaker, told police the attacks occurred on the playground during recess on Friday.
Hunsaker said that a group of black 6th graders gathered multiple white students on the playground and forced them to say “Black Lives Matter” against their will, according to the incident report. There were allegedly five victims and four suspects involved in the violent incident.
Some of the suspects allegedly recorded the white students as they were forced to make the statement.
Hunsaker told police the kids who tried to avoid the bullies were chased down, dragged or carried to a designated spot on the playground, and at least one white student was punched in the head. There is reportedly surveillance footage of the incident.
School staff reportedly told police that they did not immediately report the incident to police because they were still interviewing the students involved.
The parents of a 12-year-old boy who was assaulted on the playground told WHIO7 they didn’t understand why school staff didn’t intervene.
“Where was the school staff when all of this was taking place? And why?” Ryan Springer asked. “Why did it get so far?”
The boy’s mother Ashley Henthorne told WHIO “she wasn’t notified of the incident when it happened Friday,” but noticed a change in her son over the weekend.
“I kept asking him all weekend, are you OK? And he kept saying, ‘yeah, I’m just tired’ And then when I got the phone call Monday about it, I was like, ‘that explained a lot.’” Henthrone said.
Springer said his son is “traumatized” and doesn’t want to return to school.
“He’s like he’s kind of traumatized… he’s not a very confrontational kid. He’s got one of the biggest hearts of any kid around,” he said.
Another couple interviewed for a Fox 45 report said they didn’t find out until Monday that their 11-year-old son was “thrown to the ground.”
The boy allegedly didn’t tell his parents but the school called them three days later.
“I don’t understand how it got as far as it did,” said Krystal Harr, the boy’s mother. “Because teachers should have been paying closer attention.”
The sixth grader is now afraid to go back to school, Harr told Fox 45.
“He’s not excited to go to school at all, she said. “He’s terrified.”
District officials said in a statement that they are aware of the incident and are “committed to providing our students with a safe learning environment, where they look forward to attending every day.”
The District is aware of a situation that occurred at Kenwood Elementary. We are working closely with the Springfield Police Division on this matter to ensure that we maintain that safe environment. Because this is now a police matter, no additional information is available at this time.
Police said the suspects could face charges of assault and menacing.
“This incident is still under investigation and detectives continue to conduct interviews in the case,” police said Thursday. “The Division is working in conjunction with the Clark County Prosecutor’s office to determine potential next steps in this matter.”
The Springfield Police report stated the incident took place at Kenwood Elementary. Allegedly, a group of black students at Kenwood Elementary forced several white students to say “Black Lives Matter." If they did not comply, or tried to avoid the situation, the students were… https://t.co/mfS03wE73Y pic.twitter.com/HvSS62pMAW
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