School officials on leave after viral video shows cheerleaders forced into splits

*Warning: The video above may be disturbing to some viewers.*

DENVER (WHDH) — Five school officials in Denver are reportedly on administrative leave after a viral video surfaced that showed cheerleaders being forced into splits over the summer.

The parents of the cheerleader involved say their daughter showed them excruciating video that depicted the East High School cheer coach forcing her into a split.

The incident reportedly happened back in June.

In the video, the 13-year-old girl — Ally Wakefield — cries out in pain, but the coaching group continues despite her cries.

“My daughter is begging them to stop,” said her mother, Kirsten Wakefield. “Somebody had attacked my little girl and people sat around and let it happen and nobody stopped them.”

The parents say they reached out to the school to take action. The school district announced that it placed five school officials on leave — including the high school’s principal, assistant principal, cheer coach, assistant cheer coach, and the deputy general counsel.

The Denver Public Schools superintendent said a notification was sent to the district’s athletic directors emphasizing that the district does not allow the use of “forced splits” or “any other activity that puts a student’s physical or mental health at risk, or in which a student is forced to perform an exercise beyond the point at which they express their desire to stop.”

Police say they are investigating the incident as a matter of child abuse.

 

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