LAKELAND, FL (WFLA) – A shocking fight was caught on camera at Kathleen High School in Lakeland. Now the mother of the victim is speaking out, begging the school system to do a better job at handling bullying cases.
This video shot on Oct. 12 shows 16-year-old Cheyane Blythe being beaten by two fellow students in the middle of a courtyard at Kathleen High School.
Blythe’s mother, Cassie Foster, says the fight was over a boy.
The video shows the two girls punching Blythe and shoving her to the ground. A fellow student ran over to try to protect Blythe, but one of the attackers shoved him away and slapped Blythe numerous times.
The names of the attackers are being withheld because they are minors.
Foster tells 8 On Your Side the two attackers were suspended but after they returned to school, the bullying continued. The mother says after the girls returned to school, they would frequently call her names and shove her in the hallways.
Blythe has since withdrawn from the school.
Foster gets emotional when she views the video. She said,
“I cried.I just can’t imagine why it takes 2 girls to do this, or why this is even happening or why the school isn’t doing anything about it.”
Foster thinks the school did not do enough to punish the girls or protect her daughter. A spokesperson for the Polk County School System released the following statement:
‘It’s our understanding that the Polk County Sheriff’s Office is investigating, and we are cooperating with their investigation. Appropriate disciplinary action related to this matter will be taken. However, due to the confidential nature of student records, we cannot provide more details.’
Foster wants the school system to take greater measures to prevent this sort of bullying from happening again. “I think these girls need consequences to their actions, I think they should be expelled from school,” said Foster.
Late Friday afternoon, the Polk County Sheriff’s Office told 8 On Your Side that one of the attackers was charged with misdemeanor battery and misdemeanor interruption of a school function.
Charges are expected to be filed for the other student involved. Foster is happy that the Sheriff’s office is taking action, but she’s frustrated that it has taken nearly two weeks. She thinks action should have been taken more swiftly. The case is still under investigation.