A New Jersey mom was brutally beaten after confronting the vice principal at her son’s school about bullying.
As NJ.com reports, Beronica Ruiz, 35, was attacked on June 19 by a 13-year-old student from Passaic Gifted and Talented Academy School No. 20. He was one of three who had been racially targeting and threatening her 12-year-old son the day prior.
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According to Ruiz’s lawyer Daniel Santiago:
“They were chanting, ‘Mexicans should go back behind the wall.’”
When the victim told the group, “We all come from immigrants,” they threatened him with violence. At that point, Ruiz’s son informed school officials. In response, staff isolated him in an office or classroom for the rest of the day.
However, no one contacted Ruiz to let her know what had occurred. So when her son told her he was afraid to return to school, she became upset.
As a result, Ruiz made a visit to the school to ask the vice principal why he had not contacted her about the hate incident. NJ.com reports, the administrator reportedly admitted that he should have called her, but he had gotten busy with other things.
“That’s a woefully inadequate response. ‘My bad’ is not a good excuse for not calling (the parents), not telling them.”
The following day the 13-year-old jumped Ruiz as she pushed a stroller with her 1-year-old baby inside and her 12-year-old son walking beside her.
She suffered bruises, a fractured eye socket, and a bloodshot eye, which remained red for days after the assault.
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Her attorney said:
“This was a horrific and brutal attack. It takes a certain level of insanity to brutally attack a mother with a stroller and leave her for dead.”
Furthermore, school officials did not initially discipline the bully. Instead, they told the mom the attacker “had just as much right to an education as her son.”
However, after Alfonso Vasquez, the boy’s father, contacted Passaic Mayor Hector Lora the teen bully was suspended, Santiago said.
According to NJ.com, Mayor Lora sent the following statement:
As both a father and a husband I am outraged over this incident. As mayor, these are things you wish would never occur in your city or anywhere. This incident is being taken extremely seriously. I have met with and spoken personally with the family. I have met with my chief of police, local officials and school administration as well as board members to make sure there is accountability and that this family receives justice as well as any help and resources we can provide. The details regarding what led up to this incident remain under investigation. However, one thing is very clear: what occurred to this mother is unacceptable and whatever we need to do as a city, as a community, to do better by our families and our children, we will do.
School officials have not yet released a statement.