An 8-year-old student at a Cincinnati elementary school who committed suicide in January was assaulted at school two days before he died, and an attorney for the family contends that school officials did not notify the boy’s mother about the attack.
The child killed himself in January. The beating took place at Carson Elementary in Cincinnati, according to The Cincinnati Enquirer.
School officials have declined to release the video, but a report newly obtained by the Enquirer describes its content.
The video shows another boy wearing a red and gray coat yanking the 8-year-old to the floor of a bathroom after appearing to shake hands with him, the Enquirer said. The other boy appears to celebrate and rejoice as the 8-year-old lies motionless on the floor.
For nearly five minutes after that, students step over the 8-year-old, point at him, mock him, kick him and hit him.
An assistant principal eventually entered the bathroom and found the boy, the Enquirer said.
The school initially told the boy’s mother that her son fainted and was in the nurse’s office with normal vital signs, according to the paper. The mother now believes her son didn’t even realize what happened that day.
Two days after the Jan. 24 assault, the boy went to his bedroom, knotted a loop in his necktie and hanged himself from his bunk bed, according to the Enquirer.
Police found the video “alarming,” the paper said.
“I witnessed behavior that in my belief is bullying and could even rise to the level of criminal assault,” one detective wrote in a report, according to the Enquirer.
All involved in the incident were minors, the paper said.
The boy’s mother is looking for answers, attorney Jennifer Branch said, according to Fox 19 in Cincinnati.
“Maybe this had been going on for years and she had no idea, so she couldn’t help him,” Branch said, according to the station. “She couldn’t protect him and now she wants to know what was really going on.”
Police investigated the incident after the boy committed suicide and concluded that the school staff could best handle the issue. A detective asked for the name and birthdate of the boy in the red and gray coat, but authorities took no further action.