WADSWORTH, Ohio (WJW) – The mother of a 14-year-old student at Wadsworth Middle School says her son was attacked by a fellow eighth grader in a bathroom at the school on Sept. 16.
Another student videotaped the incident, as the instigator punched the boy numerous times while a group of other students cheered him on.
“It looked like some kids had put this on so that they could have a show to brag about later, to just use him as a punching bag,” Lianna Leonino told FOX 8.
Leonino says she learned what happened to her son after she got home from work that day.
“He’s like, ‘this kid punched me a couple of times in the bathroom,’ and I was like ‘are you hurt?’ He was like, ‘my head hurts,’ and he had a bump on the back of his head,” she said.
Leonino says she took her son to the Wadsworth Police Department, where she filed a police report. She later took him to the emergency room, where he was diagnosed with a concussion.
Leonino says she was unaware of the video and how many times her son was struck until she spoke with a vice principal of the school the next day and was told the video had been posted on social media.
“It was pure disgust, just disappointment, pain for him, sorrow and just how could another kid treat somebody that way?” she said.
Leonino says she was told that an investigation by school administrators led to the suspension of the instigator for 10 days.
The student who videotaped the incident was suspended for three days and her son was suspected for three day because of previous conversations he had with the other boy about fighting each other.
“He had said this had occurred a couple of times, where they had talked out the problem and this time, it was a completely different scenario. There were kids to watch,” she said.
Wadsworth City Schools Superintendent Andrew Hill says he cannot comment on the incident, but issued a statement that reads in part:
“We take the safety of our students and employees very seriously. In addition to the proactive safety measures implemented in our school district, if there are reports of incidents that jeopardize student or employee safety, we address them as soon as we become aware.”
As a result of the incident and her efforts to protect her son, Leonino says she feels there’s a target on his back on school.
She says on Monday, her son was attacked again in the hallway by two other students because of the complaint the family filed with police about the incident in the bathroom.
She maintains the school district has failed to protect the 14-year-old.
“He doesn’t want to go to school anymore. He’s afraid to go,” she said.
Wadsworth Police say they have forwarded their report about the incident to Medina County juvenile prosecutors for consideration of charges.