A viral video of a Texas student choking an Indian American peer has sparked a petition against the aggressor.
In a video circulating online, Shaan Pritmani can be seen being assaulted and choked by a white student in the cafeteria of Coppell Middle School in Texas on May 11.
The video begins with the aggressor choking Shaan with his right arm before demanding him to stand up from his seat.
“No, I’m not getting up,” Shaan replies. “There is literally no one sitting here.”
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The student then presses his elbow on Shaan’s neck from behind before choking him once again while dragging him away from the seat. Other students surrounding the two can be heard cheering.
On Wednesday, May 11th, during lunch, Shaan Pritmani was physically attacked and choked by another student at his middle school.
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Shaan’s parents were contacted by the school and informed that their son had been involved in an altercation with another student. The school allegedly found Shaan to be at fault. He received a 3-day in-school suspension as punishment, while the aggressor only received one day.
When his parents requested for a reassessment using the viral video as evidence, the school said that there will be no changes made. The School Resource Officer refused to file a citation because the school administration allegedly asked that the incident not be documented as there have already been many bullying complaints.
“Coppell ISD is aware of a video circulating on social media showing an incident at Coppell Middle School North involving a physical altercation between two students,” Coppell School Superintendent Dr. Brad Hunt wrote in an email. “Bullying, both verbal and physical, as well as physical acts of aggression are never acceptable and do not align with who we are at CISD and our core values.”
Sonika Kukreja, Shaan’s mother, started a petition on Change.org to spread awareness and to call on the school to take more action against her son’s aggressor. The petition has since gathered nearly 244,000 signatures, as of this writing. It will become one of the top petitions on Change.org if it reaches 300,000 signatures.
“Due to lack of support from the Coppell ISD and Coppell PD to correctly handle this assault, we are demanding that the aggressor be removed from my son's school immediately,” Kukreja wrote. “Shaan should never have to take a class, interact, or pass the hallways with this aggressor ever again. Shaan should be able to continue his school experience, friendships and extra-curricular activities with zero worry of ever having to cross paths with this student again. He does not feel safe.”
“Our goal is to bring awareness to the bullying and assault problem in schools everywhere,” she added. “All children deserve to be safe at school. Serious repercussions need to be in place for all violence against our children. This type of aggression needs to stop!”
Shaan’s parents have reportedly sought legal representation while awaiting the conclusion of the school’s internal investigation.
Featured Image via /u/CoolGuess