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Student charged after video of fight at Cuyahoga Falls High School goes viral

CUYAHOGA FALLS, Ohio -- A video that has now gone viral on social media shows a Cuyahoga Falls High School freshman on the ground in the school's lunchroom as he is repeatedly punched by a classmate who also attempts to stomp on his head as he is being pulled away.

Blake Ambrose, 14, said he was on the receiving end of those punches.

"Before the video he pushed me up against the wall and then he, like, put me on the ground and hit me like 28 times. Once the teacher got there he, like, stomped on my head," said Ambrose.

The video was recorded by another student, defying what Ambrose claimed was the school's rule forbidding students from recording such incidents.

It was forwarded to Ambrose's grandfather who said he was shocked by what it shows.

"Had I been told about the fight and not seen the video I could have never pictured what really happened. Maybe a fight is a couple of punches and it’s over. This clearly was not a couple of punches," said Todd Jones.

Jones posted the video to social media, hoping it would get attention from the school and police.

"I was mad. I was extremely mad because this shouldn't happen, not only to my grandson, but it shouldn't happen to anybody in any school district. That should be a safe zone and it's not," said Jones.

Cuyahoga Falls police have a school resource officer stationed in the building.  The officer was there at the time of the fight but involved in another incident.

Ambrose said it was a gym teacher who pulled the other teen away.

Police said it was the video, in part, that helped put what happened in context.

"Obviously the video, I mean it is on the video, we are able to see what occurred and just the blatancy of it. It is a clear assault. I don't think that was ever a question that it arose to that level," said Cuyahoga Falls Police Captain Todd Shafer.

Police said they have a diversion program that they can use as an alternative to filing charges but in this case it seemed obvious that the incident rose above a typical schoolyard fight.

At the same time, Shafer said he was also discouraged by the number of students who stood by encircling the fight, some of them recording the incident while doing nothing themselves to help Ambrose.

"You have to be there to help a friend and we will work out the details in the end. But, those are just really cases where, as a friend, you have to get involved and you have to help somebody that's a little less able to help themselves," said Shafer.

Ambrose said he has seen fights in the school before but in most cases there is no evidence of exactly what happened.

"Most of the fights, the teachers aren't aware of because they are like in the bathroom and stuff. And even if someone were to go and tell the principal or stuff they can't do anything about it because there's no least that's what they tell us," said Ambrose.

On Friday morning, Cuyahoga Falls police filed assault charges against the offending teenager in juvenile court.

Jones said while he posted the video to his social media account he did so with the intent of protecting the identity of the individual who recorded it to keep them from suffering consequences.

He feels strongly that without the video the incident would not have been taken as seriously as it was.

"I am at this point satisfied with (the assault charge) because it needs to be. It needs to show everybody else out there you can't do this and get away with it because it’s happening everywhere and it’s not being dealt with," said Jones.

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