An Abraham Lincoln High School student will not face charges for killing his classmate in a physical altercation after authorities determined he didn’t start the fight.
Gregary Teer, a 16-year-old at the Council Bluffs, Nebraska, high school, was said to have acted in self-defense after authorities examined school surveillance footage showing that 17-year-old Dakota Escritt, the victim, had pushed Teer three to four times before Teer struck him.
The footage (below) shows Teer land the punch, after which Escritt immediately drops to the ground and strikes his head on the tile floor. An autopsy revealed that he died of blunt force trauma to the head.
According to a report from the Daily Mail, prosecutors felt Teer used reasonable force in defending himself from Escritt’s actions.
The decision divided the school with a number of students choosing to wear all black in Escritt’s honor as he fought for his life in the hospital. Other students decided to wear red and blue to symbolize coming together during a tough time.
As for the Abraham Lincoln student at the heart of the controversy — Teer — he says that he “regrets” what happened and is “remorseful” even though he was defending himself.
In a separate report from KMTV Action 3 News — video below — the school has decided not to expel Teer but to send him to an alternative learning center for the remainder of his junior year, thus leaving the door open for him to attend his senior year.
However, Teer and his attorney are not happy with this punishment. Since he’s been cleared of wrongdoing, they feel delaying his return will only draw more attention to him later.
Not even Escritt’s family believe that Teer meant to kill their loved one, though they do wish there were “some kind of charges” the D.A. could pursue.
Head superintendent Dr. Martha Bruckner of the Abraham Lincoln High School district said she hopes this is a wakeup call to her students.
“They believe that pushing and shoving and fighting is just part of growing up,” she said, adding, “I firmly believe there was no intent with either of those young men to significantly hurt the other.”
What do you think, readers? Should prosecutors have dropped all charges against Gregary Teer for striking and killing his classmate, and do you think that the punishment administered by Abraham Lincoln High School is fair to Teer? Sound off in our comments section.