The parents of two teenagers have filed a federal lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the
Eastern District of Pennsylvania against the Southeast Delco School District and a bus driver after their children were allegedly forced to stay on a bus while attacked by a group of bullies.
Athena Blythe, of Collingdale, Pa., and Jackee Forner, of Sharon Hill, Pa., blame the driver for failing to intervene during the attack and falsely imprisoning the students when they asked to get off the bus. According to the complaint, they are seeking damages for physical injuries, pain and suffering, severe mental anguish and deprivation of their state and federal constitutional rights.
According to the court documents, on Oct. 9, 2013, the two students were on their way home from the Delaware County Alternative High School, seated in the front row of a bus driven by Hykeem Green. Three other students who had teased and bullied the teenagers earlier that day began harassing them again by calling them racists, the complaint says.
One of the bullies told the victims, "I's a coming up, get ready, it's about to get real...you wanna move." Green told the bullies to leave the teenagers alone, but they ignored him and punched one of the victims four times in the face, according to the claim.
The complaint says that Green watched when the victim stood up and told his attacker that he would tell. Another bully punched him in the face and knocked him into the other victim. One of the teens asked to be let off the bus, but Green said he could not do that. The complaint says that Green never attempted to call 911 or the bus dispatch to help the plaintiffs' children.
When the bus arrived at one of the victim's home, Green allowed both to leave the bus. According to the court documents, Green knew both boys were injured and bleeding but did nothing to assist them. Green, the school district and the Delaware County Intermediate Unit are also accused of failing to report the incident to the proper authorities.
The school district and DCIU are also blamed for having a policy that kept children on a school bus until their stop, even when they are under attack and face a danger to their lives.
The plaintiffs seek compensatory damages, punitive damages, and coverage for court costs. They are represented by Joseph Oxman of Oxman, Goodstadt & Kuritz.
The federal case ID number is 2:14-cv-02708-CDJ.