A Puyallup teenager says she considered suicide after she was beaten by classmates at school.
The alleged attack took place last Friday in a bathroom stall at Glacier View Junior High School in Puyallup.
The school says it is investigating, but that is not enough for the teenager’s father.
Both he and his daughter believe the attack was racially motivated.
There is video. KIRO 7 did not air it, but it shows the victim trapped in a bathroom stall, being taunted, then beaten.
“I just feel someone pull me up from my hair,” remembered Kailinh Wiley, “and start swinging for my face.”
It has been three long days since Kailinh says she was attacked by a classmate inside Glacier View Junior High School, as at least four others, including a best friend, looked on.
And it still hurts.
“I just felt so alone and like I genuinely wanted to end my life,” she said, dissolving into tears. “Because it just hurt really bad, the fact that my friend, my so-called best friend, was there and watching it happen.”
“Parent’s worst nightmare.” That is how Steven Wiley describes his reaction to what happened to his 14-year-old daughter. She faced similar threats last year. He complained to the school in advance and thwarted it. But this year, he advised her to defend herself.
Then he saw the results on the video another student recorded.
“So now, the girl leans over,” he says, narrating the video, “has to actually bend way down to grab her by her hair, yank her up and then pull her up and everything happened. And they all walked out the door. Teacher came.”
He believes the attack was motivated by race.
“According to these girls, Asian girls should not, could not or shan’t wear box braids and corn rows,” Wiley said, “or whatever they feel is inappropriate.”
“Yeah, this is not an uncommon thing,” said Pierce County Sheriff’s Deputy Carly Cappetto.
She is one of six Puyallup school resource officers.
Late last year, a student was badly beaten at a middle school, that time in Tacoma. It, too, captured on video.
Cappetto says it is all a bid toward being popular.
“And nowadays to get that popularity, it’s posting a video,” she said. “And it could be something that’s inappropriate, that’s going to catch attention and get you the likes and the clicks that they’re looking for.”
School officials say they are investigating what happened here last Friday.
But Cappetto says she dealt with three similar assaults herself at other Puyallup schools last week alone.
She says there are resources to help prevent these disputes from becoming violent.
The officers can get no-contact orders, put the students in separate classrooms, move troublesome students to online learning.
Cappetto says many students won’t come forward for fear of being called “a snitch.” She says they can’t help if the students won’t let them know.
Moreover, those who are involved in the assaults are committing a crime and any video can be used as evidence.
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