News 4 Investigates: District officials' explosive response to a - KMOV.com

News 4 Investigates: District officials' explosive response to alleged assault inside school

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The mother of a teen who says she was assaulted at a school in St. Louis City recorded her meeting with district officials about the alleged incident. Credit: KMOV The mother of a teen who says she was assaulted at a school in St. Louis City recorded her meeting with district officials about the alleged incident. Credit: KMOV
ST. LOUIS, Mo. (KMOV.com) -

A 14-year-old girl says she was sexually assaulted inside her school.

The mother of the victim says the school district isn't doing enough to punish those responsible or protect other kids.

This all came to light in the last few months after a picture of her daughter performing a sex act, the mother says, circulated around her daughter’s school.

“This is not something that needed to happen to her, this is not something that should have happened to her. I send her to school to be safe,” said Roshanda Balentine.

Balentine says the unthinkable happened to her 14-year-old daughter at Cleveland ROTC in St Louis City.

A report obtained by News 4 confirms some of the alleged details.

Sometime in October, Balentine says two older male students pulled her daughter into a boy's bathroom and forced her to perform oral sex.

"I know she is not lying. I know she is telling the truth,” Balentine said.

She wants the male students who did it held responsible.

“For you to sit there in a school building, forcing someone that they don't want to do, what kind of home training do you have, what kind of thoughts do you have?” Balentine said.

She says St Louis Public School District leaders didn't take it seriously and were concerned only with getting her daughter transferred.

The district and police investigated, but Balentine says not enough has been done.

“I want the school to take accountability, accept the fact that this happened on your school grounds and do something. They need to punish these boys,” she told News 4.

When News 4 first contacted them last month, school officials said they were prevented from providing details about the incident.

After News 4’s inquiries, top-ranking district officials called Balentine in for a meeting and she recorded it.

On the recording, officials said they're sorry.

“It was botched. I don't know how else to say it. We apologize. It was botched and that's why we are changing the procedures and that's why we are having this big meeting,” said a district official.

Requests for an on-camera interview with the district were denied. News 4 does not know how policies or procedures have changed. The district said in a statement they are "committed to providing a safe environment for all students.” Adding “the district continuously strives to respond to family concerns and is always willing to engage our parents in dialogue when their expectations are not met."

Balentine, though, says she still feels like she hasn't gotten the answers she deserves.  She has to deal with this for the rest of her life from now until she gone.

Balentine says the male students her daughter identified as her attackers denied any involvement. One is an adult, 18-years-old, and the other is 16.

She wants the picture tracked down as proof.

St. Louis City prosecutors say the incident remains under criminal investigation.

Meanwhile, News 4 asked if there were any cameras in the area near the bathroom in question, but while officials said there are 500 cameras throughout the district, they declined to identify where the cameras are placed or how the information captured by the cameras is stored or retained, citing student safety. 

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