Middle school students at Louise Radloff Middle School in Gwinnett County, Georgia, have been charged with a racially motivated crime after they allegedly called one of their Black classmates the n-word and whipped her with a belt.
The incident occurred on March 30. The teacher, who witnessed the alleged attack, is now under investigation for not reporting it to the school's administration.
According to the Gwinnett County Police, a Black middle school girl was sitting with a Hispanic student in class when she was approached by another Hispanic student who asked how much she was willing to sell herself for, referring to the girl as a "monkey."
The Hispanic student sitting with the Black girl responded with a price and the other Hispanic student said he owned her, then began to whip her with a belt.
According to Camerson Madison, the girl's father:
“She was sitting with a Hispanic child, and the other Hispanic child approached them and said, ‘How much for your monkey?’ And the child responded, ‘$450.’ And so the main child said alright, looked at my daughter and said, ‘Alright, I own you now N-word. Do my homework slave'."
"My daughter refused and that’s when the child asked the other child to remove his belt and he gave her some lashings. And that’s when the teacher initially said, ‘Alright you boys, leave her alone'.“
A news report about the incident is included below.
The severity of the situation was evident when Madison revealed his daughter had texted her mother, expressing she no longer felt safe.
He further stated despite the teacher witnessing the incident, the teacher did not intervene or report it to the school administration. As a result, the victim was forced to sit in the classroom with the two boys who had allegedly attacked her.
The teacher is now under investigation.
The principal, Jennifer Callahan, claimed to have no prior knowledge of the situation, but upon learning of it suspended the students involved in the incident, sent a letter to all parents and launched an investigation with the Gwinnett County Police Department for a racially motivated crime.
One of the Hispanic students later showed no remorse in a post on Instagram, bragging:
“They’re acting liked I killed someone, I ain’t even hit that hard [laughing emojis].”
You can see the student's post below.
Many took to social media to condemn the perpetrators.
The incident highlights the issue of racism and discrimination in schools and the need for schools to have clear policies and procedures for dealing with these incidents.
Advocates have stressed schools should create a safe environment for all students, regardless of their race, gender, or sexual orientation and offer resources for students who are victims of racism or discrimination and ensure that they are safe and supported.