Belleville Police detectives are investigating after the mother of a freshman student at Althoff Catholic High School reported that her daughter was held against her will by classmates who forcibly cut her hair.
The 15-year old student's mother, Marie Wicker, told News 4 her daughter "approached my vehicle holding two handfuls of her hair, and she was crying."
Principal Dave Harris wouldn't comment on what happened or how students were being disciplined but released a prepared statement.
"As with all matters of student safety and security, we have taken this incident very seriously and have made it clear that the conduct of the male student involved was inappropriate and unacceptable," the statement read.
Wicker said neither Harris, nor any other school employees called police, but she did because she believed a crime had been committed.
"I said sir, I'm a disabled cop myself and what we're dealing with is assault," said Wicker.
Photos show about 8 inches of hair was cut in the back but as much as 12 inches of hair was cut on the sides.
Wicker said she viewed surveillance video of the incident, along with school officials, and it showed as many as ten students taking part.
"When I watched the video sir, I was just sick, I was sick all day. I haven't slept, I really haven't eaten," said Wicker.
The principal's statement clarifies what they believe is shown in the surveillance video, contradictory to what Wicker said she saw in the video."Since this unfortunate incident occurred, statements have been made in the media alleging that the female student involved was “held down” by more than one student while they forcibly cut her hair. These statements are contrary to what is shown in the safety and security video. The safety and security video of this incident has been viewed by both the Administration and law enforcement. Contrary to the statements being made in the media, the safety and security video shows only one male student involved in cutting the female student’s hair, and not multiple students. Moreover, the safety and security video does not show the female student being “held down.” In the brief interaction shown on the safety and security video, both students are shown standing in the hallway. Although the incident occurred in a hallway where other students were present, the safety and security video does not show the female student being “held down” or multiple students involved in the incident."Wicker says she wants to work with the school to strengthen the bully prevention program and would like to see an anonymous hotline installed.
She said her daughter told her she's forgiven the students who ganged up on her and that she doesn't want to transfer to another high school.
Copyright 2018 KMOV (Meredith Corporation). All rights reserved.