Bullying, not race, called factor in Belleville's bus attack

Belleville News DemocratSeptember 16, 2009 

A violent attack on a Belleville West school bus led to at least seven suspensions Tuesday as Belleville Police said they no longer believed the attacks were racially motivated.

"It's not necessarily race-related," Belleville Police Capt. Don Sax said of the attack caught on a school bus security camera that shows two black students punching and choking a white student Monday morning. "It's just bullying and that's where it is."

The 14- and 15-year-old students seen attacking another student were suspended and face the possibility of expulsion and juvenile criminal charges. They were released to their parents.

One student, Steve Raines, is seen in the video preventing a third attack on the victim.

"He was getting beat and he wasn't even defending himself, so I felt like I had to help stop it," Steve said.

At least five students in addition to the attackers were suspended for their behavior on the bus, said one of those students, D'Vante Lott, 16, a junior. He said he and four other students called into the office at the same time were all suspended, he for five days beginning Wednesday. He said others on the bus were called in by administrators but he did not know their fates.

Read the complete story at bnd.com

McClatchy Washington Bureau is pleased to provide this opportunity to share information, experiences and observations about what's in the news. Some of the comments may be reprinted elsewhere in the site or in the newspaper. We encourage lively, open debate on the issues of the day, and ask that you refrain from profanity, hate speech, personal comments and remarks that are off point. Thank you for taking the time to offer your thoughts.

Commenting FAQs | Terms of Service