An investigation is underway after a young student says she was smacked in the face with a laptop back in April.
A 13-year-old Boston Public School student needed five stitches in her forehead after she says a classmate attacked her with a Chromebook laptop at the Murphy School on April 28.
“When I saw her bleeding like that, it brought tears to my eyes. To imagine your child in such pain,” said her mom Karen Pham. “She didn’t do anything. She didn’t deserve it.”
Pham’s daughter is not the only one.
On May 2, a girl was hit over the head with a Chromebook more than six times by a former friend at the Kilmer School. The following day a Boston Latin Academy boy was struck in a similar manner for allegedly sitting in a seat the suspect wanted.
These allegations are raising alarm about the state of school safety in the city.
“We are in a difficult, stressful time for many of our young people who, as their families have absorbed stress in the pandemic, have had to find ways to cope with that,” Mayor Michelle Wu said. “The data overall does not show an increase in incidents over previous years.”
In each case, reports show it was the victims, not the schools, who contacted the police.
“They did not call the police which baffled me because he clearly attacked her. He hit her once, then thought about it and hit her again,” Pham said.
This prompted Pham to get an attorney and file an official complaint of negligence. She is hoping to get financial damages for what her daughter went through.
“Frankly, I wouldn’t be surprised if they deliberately were not reporting it. I don’t think it’s to avoid a police response. I just think they’re overwhelmed and don’t know how to handle it,” said Pham’s attorney John Peck.
7NEWS brought that concern to the superintendent.
“We will call police when we need to when we think it raises to that level,” said Boston Schools Superintendent Brenda Cassellius. “Then we will work with our families and contact our school leaders.”
Pham said now her teenager is scarred both physically and emotionally from her experience and she says the district is to blame.
“It’s absolute trash the way they’re handling it,” she said.
Boston Public Schools no longer have police officers in the buildings. Instead, they employ safety specialists who have no power to arrest.
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