Pinellas student's school beating goes viral | News
Clearwater, Florida - A Pinellas 9th grader was beaten by another student at school, and now that video is on YouTube and Facebook. Her parents are outraged.
The fight took place Wednesday morning at Calvin Hunsinger School in Clearwater, a school for emotional and behavioral disabilities from K-12 grade.
A group of students stood, watching and recording, as one of their classmates was being beaten by another student at school.
"I think they're horrible people for letting someone do that, and seeing someone get brutally beaten, and not do anything about it," said the victim, 14-year-old Vanessa Chauvin.
Vanessa said while she was sitting in the bus circle around 9:15 Wednesday morning, the other female middle school student, who was serving an in-school-suspension, tapped her on her the back and started the fight over a boy.
In the video Vanessa is seen wearing a blue shirt.
"She said, 'What's up then?' and she just started hitting me. I tried to fight back, but she grabbed my hair, and that's when I had no chance of fighting back," explained Vanessa.
"She kneed my in the face five times; she punched me; she upper-cutted and kicked me in my stomach and she kept punching me in my face- and kneeing me in my face," Vanessa continued.
She has bruises on her left forehead and underneath her left eye.
The 45-second long video shows a male student pulling the girl off of Vanessa to end the fight.
Vanessa said during the fight, the teachers and administrators were out of sight until the end.
"That's when they come to help you," she said.
The teen is upset about the video appearing on YouTube and Facebook.
"I feel embarrassed, very embarrassed. I don't want people to look at me and say I'm 'weak.'"
"I want some answers how my daughter has been hospitalized twice, and jumped three times in this one school year," said Vanessa's mother, LoriAnn Chauvin. "It's unacceptable. I can't put her back in that school. She is not safe."
Chauvin also said a school administrator's explanation is not enough.
When Chauvin asked the administrator her questions, she said his defense was a "kink in the chain."
"Well, there are too many kinks in the chain. These kids aren't safe and something needs to be done, or someone will get hurt worse than her," she said.
School district officials say the principal is taking this matter seriously and is investigating along with campus police.
The Pinellas Sheriff's Office is taking this matter seriously too. Vanessa's family filed a complaint with a deputy over what appears to be threatening Facebook messages sent to Vanessa by a student at the school.
According to school district officials, during the 2011 school year there were 27 students arrested at Hunsinger, and 43 during the 2010 school year.
The most common offense was battery on a school board employee.