Charges in schoolbus beating
Two teen assailants have been charged in the beating of a ten year old on a school bus in New Baltimore, Michigan. The assault took place on May 12.
Two teenage boys have been charged with assault in the school bus beating of a 10-year-old that was recorded by a surveillance camera.
The tape shows the 13- and 14-year-old boys taunting and teasing Chester Gala on their way home from Anchor Bay Middle School North on May 12. Gala told police that he was hit about 15 times on the head and face.
One of the teens was suspended for the remainder of the year, while action against the other boy was not disclosed, principal Timothy Brisbois said Tuesday.
The tape shows one of the teens standing up and punching Gala repeatedly.
"He's twice the victim's size," Macomb County Prosecutor Eric Smith told The Macomb Daily of Mount Clemens. "It's really sickening to watch."
The student who was shown punching Gala was charged with assault, a one-year misdemeanor. The other student, who was shown poking his finger at Gala, was charged with misdemeanor assault, which carries a penalty of up to 93 days in jail, Smith told The Detroit News.
Both were awaiting pretrial hearings in juvenile court, authorities said.
Gala did not miss any school because of the beating.
Despite the altercation, the bus driver continued her route and yelled for the boys to stop fighting, Gala told New Baltimore police. She also asked if he was all right and handed him a paper towel for his bloody nose, he said.
Brisbois said he has no problem with the way the bus driver conducted herself. "She told the students to stop, and they stopped the hitting immediately. This could have been a much worse situation," he said.
Assault charges are certainly warranted. I once witnessed a much smaller student get punched in the face by an older and much larger student as they were walking home from school. After intervening, I got the names of the kids, provided first aid to the victim, and then took him back to school so that the nurse could help him.
I called the victim's father, who said that the assailant had been tormenting his son for weeks. When I suggested he file assault charges with the police, his response was, "You can do that?" Since the tormenting that led to the fight started at school, we took disciplinary action, and the young thug was charged with assault. The thug's dad protested his son's suspension, since the assault hadn't occurred on school property (the thug had planned it so that he hit his victim across the street from school property).
However, he soon found out that a fight that starts at school, even if it's only verbal while at school, can indeed lead to school discipline. In addition, his son was indeed found guilty of assault under the juvenile code and received consequences through the system. Legally, the school district stands in loco parentis until the student gets across his own threshhold, whether they are walking home or on the school bus.