LAKELAND, Fla. – A student posted a video on TikTok depicting her killing another student and is facing possible charges.
Update: The student was not arrested as originally reported. However, an investigation is underway, and the State Attorney’s Office will determine if charges will be filed.
But according to Citizens Defending Freedom (CDF), when the victim’s mother reported the video to school officials, they refused to act. Instead, the school resource officer effectively trespassed the victim’s mom for reporting the violent threat.
The scene unfolded at Rosabelle W. Blake Academy in Lakeland, part of the Polk County School District.
After Trisha Brown, the mother of the victim, a white 11-year-old girl, brought the video to the attention of school administrators on Monday, Blake Academy refused to take action, according to CDF.
Brown pulled her daughter out of the school on Tuesday after confirming with Blake Academy that the aggressor student, a black 5th-grade female who made the video, had not faced any disciplinary action and was in class that day.
“After two more days of the school shrugging off the incident, Brown returned to the school, this time bringing with her a May 31 court date from the Polk County Court, showing that she had a hearing to gain a protective order against the student who made the video,” said CDF.
VIDEO: Of The Threat On TikTok Provided By CDF
After reporting the incident to the school resource officer, Brown left the property. Shortly after she left, the school resource officer called her and told her she was not welcome to return to the school, according to CDF.
Frustrated, Brown turned to Citizens Defending Freedom, a non-profit organization, which helps empower parents and Americans who feel like there is nowhere else to turn when their rights are violated. Representatives from Citizens Defending Freedom recommended for her to report the incident to law enforcement and escalate the report to the Florida Department of Education.
Upon bringing the case to the attention of the Florida Department of Education in Tallahassee on Thursday, Brown was later told that the Lakeland Police Department had arrested the student who made the video. But Lakeland Police Department says that’s not the case.
“We have not arrested the 5th-grade student,” said Lakeland Police Department. “A student, who is currently enrolled in fifth grade at Blake Academy, created a video off-campus about another student using a phone application and uploaded it to social media. Both students involved were interviewed. The student mentioned in the video did not feel threatened by the video or the student who made the video since they are friends.”
Police say a threat assessment was completed, and an officer conducted a home visit at the residence of the student who made the video. No weapons were located.
“Based on the evidence obtained, the officer filed a complaint affidavit for violation of (FSS. 836.10) written or electronic threats to kill or do bodily injury. The complaint affidavit will be reviewed by the State Attorney’s Office to determine if charges will formally be filed in this case,” said Lakeland Police.
“My daughter has been subjected to violent threats from another student for more than a week, and Blake Academy refused to take any action at all,” said Brown. “The manner in which the school handled this incident is totally unacceptable, and the fact that I had to spend the past week fighting for my daughter’s safety tells me that there is something horribly wrong going on inside the Polk County School District. This is just the beginning of this battle. I will do everything in my power to ensure that justice is served to the girl who heinously threatened my daughter’s life.”
According to representatives from Citizens Defending Freedom, this isn’t the only Polk County School with leaders making questionable decisions. Citizens Defending Freedom has been battling to have violent and pornographic books removed from schools across Florida.
One of those books is called Assassination Classroom, where students visibly gun down their teacher in the classroom, according to CDF.
After Citizens Defending Freedom challenged the book at Mulberry High School in Polk County, a 12-person panel at the school voted 11-1 to keep the Assassination Classroom series in the school library.
The school’s principal determined the books were appropriate for 6th-8th grade students, while the rest of the 12-person panel suggested they were more suitable for 9th-12th grade students.
“It certainly seems like the leaders within this school district have a history of refusing to take action, and have abdicated their duty to listen to parents and protect students,” said James Judge, the national spokesman for Citizens Defending Freedom. “But whether they are threats of violence like this one, or providing students with pornographic and violent materials in libraries, schools increasingly seem interested in working against parents. Rather, it seems school officials believe they should not be accountable to parents at all. This is another reason why Citizens Defending Freedom exists, and we’re proud of our Florida team who helped this mother in need while justice was wrongly delayed by Blake Academy.”
We have reached out to the Lakeland Police Department for comment and will update this story.
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