A 14-year-old Virginia boy has been charged with two counts of assault for fighting back against a group of at least four relentless high school bullies, a losing battle that left him brutally beaten and hospitalized for nine days.
The teen victim, Eric Martin, has also been banned from attending Highland Springs High School in Henrico until he signs a form saying he threatened the school, a baseless allegation the school can’t prove.
Eric’s mother, Mary Martin, says the school is enacting harsh punishment on her son because he threw the first punch in the altercation, which happened on school grounds. In an interview with NBC 12, she claims Eric had been continually bullied by the boys who beat him, called “gay” and a “faggot,” and implies the school did nothing to stop it.
Though it’s unfortunate that a fight broke out in the first place, Mary Martin says her son was only fighting back as a last resort, and is being punished too harshly.
Eric reportedly suffered a broken arm and concussion as a result of the attack, and was also on suicide watch at the hospital.
“I’m angry, and I’m hurt,” Mary Martin told NBC 12. “He’s got bruises all down the spine of his back where he was just slammed on that table.”
“So in other words the four or five boys can beat my boy to death,” she said, “and he gets one slap in and gets charged, too? That’s plain ridiculous.”