Belleville police: Video suggests school bus attack was racially motivated -

Belleville police: Video suggests school bus attack was racially motivated

Belleville, IL ( -- Belleville police are investigating after a student was beaten on a school bus.

Authorities say a 17-year-old student was beaten two different times by two different students while enroute to Belleville West High School on Monday morning.

According to Belleville Police Captain Don Sax, the victim was attempting to find a seat on the bus and several students refused to let the student sit next to them.

Sax says that the student asked one of the suspects if he could sit down, and the video shows the suspect shaking his head. The bus driver then told all of the students to find a seat and began to drive. Sax says the victim is seen moving the suspect's backpack out of the way and sitting in the seat. That's when the attack happened.

Surveillance video on the bus shows the suspect attempting to push the victim out of his seat and then beating the victim by punching him in the face and choking him.

The victim again sat down in his seat and after a few minutes, the second suspect is seen walking over to the victim and striking him in the face.

When asked if the incident was racially motivated, Sax said, "If you watch the video, it's a strong suggestion that it was obviously race-related. Both of the suspects are black, one white victim."


Both of the suspects are juveniles and will be petitioned through the court for charges on Tuesday. News 4 is told that the suspects are 14 and 15 years-old. Police have not released the names of any of the students involved.

The victim did not go to the hospital, but Sax says he did suffer some cuts and bruises on his face.

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