Blake Kitchen, a 12-year-old special needs student with Asperger’s Syndrome, was brutally beaten by bullies inside the cafeteria at Liberty Middle School in Liberty, Missouri. According to ABC News, the incident which reportedly took place on Thursday, Feb. 19, began with a simple request. Blake finds solace in maintaining his daily routine, so he was sitting in his usual spot in the cafeteria that morning for breakfast.
An unnamed student allegedly moved Blake’s belongings and took his seat. When he asked the boy to move, the verbal exchange escalated into a physical altercation. The student began hitting him. Sometime during the brutal beating, Blake blacked out. WDAF-TV reports, Blake was hospitalized for four days following the brutal assault. He has a fractured skull and jawline.
He also has cerebrospinal fluid leaking from his right ear and it is unclear whether he’ll have to undergo surgery for that injury. There is a possibility he could lose hearing in that ear. It has also been reported that he was rushed back to the hospital because he started bleeding again. Sadly, the disheartening incident probably could have been prevented if school officials had taken his mother’s complaints seriously.
Blake’s mother, Destiny, recently revealed her children have been victims of bullying for quite some time. She’s reportedly complained to Liberty Middle School on several occasions following disheartening incidents where other students have harassed her oldest son, Preston.
According to The Kansas City Star, the bullying started at the beginning of the school year for 14-year-old Preston. He’s been humiliated, threatened and called a “fag.” However, that’s not all. He’s also had dumped food trays on him in the cafeteria. Bullies even demolished his cell phone during one altercation. Destiny has voiced her concerns with school officials on numerous occasions, but to no avail. As a matter of fact, the boys’ grandfather also submitted a written complaint to the school last month. His complaint was actually in reference to Preston’s bully.
“I am certain that you are concerned for the safety of all students… I also believe that Preston is afraid that if this particular young man is punished, Preston will be in greater danger.”
Unfortunately, that complaint was also ignored. Since school officials reportedly never made an effort to address the complaints, Blake has become a victim of bullying also. During a recent interview with WDAF-TV, Kitchen recalled the horrific incident, explaining how it felt to see her son in so much pain. At one point she even thought he was going to die.
“It makes me sad and angry to see him have that moment of terror. Is your son going to make it? To listen to him cry and say, ‘Mommy, I’m going to die. Please don’t let me die. I’m not ready.’ It could have been avoided.”
The alleged bully, whose name has not been released due to privacy issues, was reportedly arrested. On Tuesday, February 24, Liberty Police Capt. Andy Hedrick stated that the case will be heard in a juvenile court.
[Image via WDAF-TV]