Suspension, investigation follows viral lunchroom attack

Posted at 11:27 PM, Mar 21, 2016
and last updated 2016-03-21 23:27:23-04

IONIA, Mich. -- An Ionia mother expressed outrage after she saw cell phone video of her daughter being targeted during an attack at Ionia Middle School a few weeks ago. The video was posted two weeks ago, and now one of the people involved faces suspension.

The girl responsible for the attack was suspended for 180 days, but, according to the victim's mom, the punishment is not enough. On March 21, FOX 17 learned the victim's mother, Misty Edwards, wants the video to be removed from social media and the girl who is shown attacking her daughter charged to the fullest extent of the law.

Edwards said the video was recorded in the lunchroom cafeteria. The footage was captured by three girls on their cell phones, she said, calling it a planned attack involving at least five other girls. The video that been viewed more than 250,000 times on social media.

"This is more than bullying: it’s a set up attack," said Edwards. "It was an assault, and now it’s leading to bullying, because she’s being teased."

"[It's] very emotional for the whole family," Edwards said of the toll it's taken on her entire family. Her daughter is "embarrassed, her feelings are hurt, [and] she’s mixed up right now."

School administrators told us they are aware of the situation and are working with police to investigate.

"I would really appreciate it if all these girls got the same punishment," said Edwards.

So far, only the alleged attacker has been suspended for 180 days. It's not clear if anyone else will face suspension.

"They need to stop it now, not a slap on the hand, or else it’s just going to continue," said Edwards.

Edwards told us she plans to press charges as police continue to investigate the case.