LIBERTY, MO (KCTV) - A little boy says he was beat up so badly at school that police had to be called.
His mom says she's now scared for both her kids and the response from viewers has been incredible.
The Kitchen family sends two boys to school at Liberty Middle School. There are anti-bullying signs everywhere, they said, but that wasn't enough to stop what happened to their youngest son.
Blake Kitchen, 12, has been through a lot this week. He won't be in school for a while after an assault last Thursday landed him in the hospital for five days.
"I got a call at 7:40 a.m. saying my son was assaulted," Destiny Kitchen said.
He had a fractured skull and jaw, was leaking spinal fluid and bleeding from his ear.
"Him crying and saying it was so painful and that he was afraid he was going to die. He was like 'I don't want to die,'" his mother said.
The serious injuries came at the hands of an eighth grader who had allegedly been bullying Blake's older brother for some time now, according to Blake's mother. The incident happened in the cafeteria.
Blake, who has Asperger's syndrome, ADHD and an anxiety disorder, tried to sit at a table and was confronted by another boy. That's when he says the boy who had been bullying his older brother confronted him.
"All he remembers is that his head was being slammed against the lunchroom table and he blacked out," Kitchen said.
Kitchen says surveillance cameras captured the rest.
"He was punched in the face, picked up and body slammed and kicked after he'd already blacked out," the mother said as she fought back tears. “He doesn't remember any of that. I guess that was a blessing. He was unconscious and doesn't remember being violently attacked. It's sad he didn't stop."
Kitchen said what makes this worse is that she'd tried to warn the school of the student in question a month ago with a letter. She says nothing was done.
"This child is a liability to this school, not just for my son, but all children," she said.
For now, Kitchen's kids are both out of school. She says they won't be back unless and until she hears the accused bully is gone for good.
"Anymore hits in the head, he could've killed him," she said.
Liberty police confirm they're investigating the assault.
The district sent a letter home to parents, a picture of which has been attached. They also followed up with a written statement:
"The Liberty Public Schools community keeps the student injured in last week's incident in our thoughts and continue the review and investigation of the incident. We understand that many students have been showing support for this student in various ways. These acts of kindness are supported by the district and we encourage students to work with their building administrator as they plan any activities that occur in our schools."
The Kitchen family's horrendous story has sparked outrage amongst viewers. Many asked where the teachers and administrators were and how they can stop bullying.
"What happened in Liberty, MO, is happening in a lot of places," said pediatric psychologist Martye Barnard.
Barnard says the effects of bullying go much deeper than the physical.
"Children avoid school because they're being bullied. Children get depressed, children get anxious," she said.
She said if a parent suspects their child is being bullied, they should protect them.
"Reassure your child you're going to do something. Don't tell them to just ignore the kids," Barnard said.
Barnard says to immediately report any bullying to the school. Kitchen did, but says nothing ever came of her complaint. That's when experts say a parent has to take matters into their own hands by calling Missouri Department of Social Services (DFS) or Kansas Department for Children and Families Social and Rehabilitation Services (SRS) and finally police. "You cannot protect your kids enough. Our children need to know we're going to do that," Barnard said.
Barnard says all children who are bullied need to see their pediatrician or counselor because, in some cases, depression from bullying can lead to suicide.
Wednesday the kids at Liberty Middle School showed their support for their classmate by wearing “blue for Blake.” If you need help because your child is being bullied or is a bully, click here for resources.
Click here to help the family with Blake's medical bills.
A Facebook page has been created to help send thoughts of love, prayers and healing of both physical and emotional recovery for Blake and his family. Click here to read more.