A Black teenager was attacked by a group of students wearing Ku Klux Klan costumes, a San Antonio news outlet reported. During a news conference last week, the teen’s attorney Matt Manning said that the attack took place at the hands of high school students in Woodsboro, Texas.
According to Sheriff Raul “Pinky” Gonzales, deputies responded to calls of a Black teen who was struck with a “Taser or cattle-prod-like” on Halloween night. Manning claims the unidentified assaults, who are believed to be members of the Woodsboro High School football team, also chased at least six other people in the area on the same night. No immediate arrests were made, and serious injuries were not reported.
“For you to dress up as a Klansman, you have a specific intent of terrorizing. That’s not an accident, that’s not kids being kids, that’s not boys being boys, that’s not hazing, that’s not high school high jinx,” said Manning. “High school high jinx is egging somebody’s house, not dressing up as a Klansman and tasing them.”
The Woodsboro Police Department, Refugio County deputies and the Texas Rangers are currently investigating the incident, which Manning strongly believes was a hate crime. Officials from the Woodsboro school district, who are “disappointed” with the allegations being made against their high school students, said that they were unable to enact any disciplinary measures because the attacks occurred off-campus. They will, however, work with law enforcement amid the probe and will “re-evaluate the situation if additional facts are discovered.”
“Woodsboro ISD counselors are available to speak with any student who has been impacted by this event,” Superintendent Ronald D. Segers wrote in the statement. “The district will continue to strictly enforce its anti-discrimination policy to the fullest extent permitted by the law and the Student Code of Conduct.”
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