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Posted on Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:59 a.m.

Huron student faces assault charge in attack on middle-schooler

By John Counts


The intersection near Scarlett Middle School where police say a high school student assaulted a middle-schooler.

John Counts |

It’s a parent’s worst nightmare.

An older student attacks a younger student in broad daylight while other students look on, some recording with phones the punch that breaks the boy’s teeth.

This is what happened to a 14-year-old Scarlett Middle School student as he walked home from school last December. The incident led to an assault charge for a 16-year-old Huron student, who is scheduled to appear in juvenile court Friday, according to Ann Arbor police.

The 16-year-old was officially charged in juvenile court with aggravated assault when a petition was filed last month. does not name juveniles involved in criminal cases unless they're tried as adults.

The 16-year-old seemingly chose the 14-year-old victim at random, according to the police report, obtained from Ann Arbor police via the Freedom of Information Act. The boy also told an accomplice, a 15-year-old Huron student not charged in the incident, to record the fight, according to the report.

The 16-year-old had been suspended from school earlier that day and witnesses told police he was looking for anybody to fight at the bus stop.

“He was going to make sure he did something to be suspended about,” a witness told police.

Ann Arbor Public Schools is not legally able to comment about any student's discipline record, said spokeswoman Liz Margolis, so the details of the fight in the hallway are unknown. It's also not known whether the student was suspended after the attack on the 14-year-old.

Margolis could say that to date 23 students at Huron High School have been suspended this school year, but that there have been no expulsions, which means the 16-year-old wasn't kicked out of school after being charged with assault.

‘Get that little kid'

The 16-year-old and 15-year-old Huron students were dropped off around 3:30 p.m. on Dec. 12 at a bus stop near Scarlett Middle School, where the 14-year-old was leaving for the day, the report states.

Crowds of students were along the streets on their way home in the area of Lorraine and LaSalle streets, the intersection within sight of Scarlett Middle School, where police were dispatched to a half hour later for an assault.

Witnesses told police the 16-year-old and 15-year-old walked up to groups of students at the corner. The 16-year-old started talking about how he wanted to make his suspension worthwhile and chased several kids in the group, attempting to strike them, the report states.

“He would confront them and say he was going to punch them and they would run away,” a witness told police, according to the report.

Then the students called to the 14-year-old boy, who was walking a different way home than he usually takes, his parents said.

“…Let’s get that little kid and go punch him,” a witness told police the 16-year-old said.

The 15-year-old boy told police the 16-year-old also asked him to record the fight on his phone.

Bleeding and unconscious

The 14-year-old boy told his recollection of the incident is a bit fuzzy.

“I don’t remember getting punched,” he said.

He does remember walking home from school using a different route than he normally took when a kid he recognized, possibly the 15-year-old, called him over.

“I don’t know what he was really trying to do, I think he was trying to lure me by saying stuff like he was going to give me his iPhone,” he said.

“As he was walking along, he could hear his name being called. He remembered that they had asked him to come over and hang with them,” Ann Arbor police Det. William Stanford wrote in the report.

All of the witnesses interviewed by police confirm the 14-year-old was coaxed over to where the older boys were standing with an invitation to hang out. The 14-year-old said he would have to ask his mother.

It was then that the 16-year-old suddenly hit the 14-year-old with a closed fist one time in the face, knocking him to the ground, according to the report.

The Huron students ran. The 15-year-old had captured part of the punch on his phone. The 14-year-old boy lay bleeding on the ground, unconscious. He later told police he never had a problem with the two boys in the past and that he had “no idea why these guys attacked him.”

Urgent care

Edward Broom, Scarlett’s assistant principal, was driving back to the middle school when he saw a group of students on the corner of Lorraine and LaSalle, so he slowed down to see what was going on, the police report states.

He noticed a woman was helping the 14-year-old, who had obvious injuries to his face. Broom then drove the boy, who had regained consciousness, back to the middle school where his parents and police were contacted.

"My mind was just completely disoriented,” the boy said. “I was just trying to figure out who I was, basically.”

His parents were both unable to immediately come to the school, so the boy’s uncle arrived and took him to the St. Joseph Mercy Hospital for his facial injuries.

"His lip was the size of a golf ball on the right side,” the 14-year-old's father told “He had some teeth broken out.”

In the police report, the officer who visited the boy in the urgent care unit afterward noted he had a very swollen upper lip, swollen right cheek with redness, a small laceration on the right cheek below the eye and a bloodshot right eye. The boy also suffered a concussion.

“It just felt numb,” the boy said.

Police began investigating immediately.

Boy charged

The 16-year-old admitted to police he punched the boy when interviewed by detectives. He told police that while on the school bus, he heard someone had been picking on his sister.

He said he walked up to the 14-year-old boy, whom he thought was the culprit, and asked him nicely if he wanted to hang out, then hit him in the face with a closed fist “as hard as he could,” according to the police report. It wasn’t until later that he discovered it was not the 14-year-old who had been picking on his sister, he told police.

“He indicated he was very angry about what had occurred at school about being suspended, and he was looking to get his frustrations out and he was using (the 14-year-old) as a way to get these frustrations out,” Stanford wrote in the report. “He felt very bad for his actions and took responsibility for them.”

A petition, the equivalent of a warrant, was signed March 8 for a charge of aggravated assault, a misdemeanor punishable by one year of incarceration or a $1,000 fine. The 16-year-old will make his first appearance in court Friday.

Police also interviewed the 15-year-old boy who recorded the punch, but he was not charged. The boy said he hadn't posted the video to Facebook and erased it from his phone in the presence of police, according to the report, but not before investigators retrieved the video for review.


The 14-year-old boy was treated at the emergency room and released that same day. He did miss a couple of days of school while his face healed. His father said the Scarlett community really rallied around his son at that time.

“They sent a packet of cards and letters,” the father said. “It was touching … to know that people really care.”

The boy, who likes video games and science fiction novels, said he received a lot of positive attention after the incident.

“I usually hang out with a small group of people," he said. "Most of the kids at school don’t really acknowledge me. I was acknowledged a bit more.”

Now a few months later, the boy's face is healed and he's ready to move on. The family has been frustrated by the lengthy legal process, but doesn't plan on attending Friday's hearing.

“I’m slightly interested, but I don’t feel like I should intervene,” the boy said, though he is interested to know what happens to the 16-year-old accused of hitting him.

The boy doesn't harbor any anger toward the 16-year-old, nor does his family.

“It seemed pretty typical of the kind of harassment that goes on between bigger kids and littler kids,” his father said. “I feel bad for the (suspect).”

John Counts covers cops and courts for He can be reached at or you can follow him on Twitter.


martini man

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 2:14 a.m.

The juvenile who allegedly committed this vicious attack will probably be arraigned as a child. If this should be the case, it means there won't be much punishment as a criminal. However, once juvie justice has been meted out , the family of the victim should head to civil court and rip em a new one.

Buck Wild

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 9:19 p.m.

Send the kid to Starr Commonwealth. He'll learn how to properly handle his emotions and behavior, and that actions such as this have proportionate consequences. Rehabilitation is key here.

Robert E.

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 3:33 a.m.

Wow Mr Martini...that is some bitter resentment...

martini man

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 2:16 a.m.

No use sending this poor misguided child to Jackson over this incident. In a couple of years he'll be old enough to get there all on his own.

Robert E.

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 1:33 a.m.

Thank you Buck...I agree completely...Starr would be a perfect rehab facility and would give the kid a serious wake up call...these "adults" calling for the kid to go to Jackson are a menace to children everywhere...

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:16 p.m.

Here is the update from court:

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:12 p.m.

The 16-year-old boy appeared in juvenile court today and asked for a court-appointed attorney. I was at the hearing and the story should be up on the site soon.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:05 p.m.

The more serious question is why the crowd of other children did not help?. That speaks volumes to me. How horrible that they stood and watched a fellow classmate being hit, bloodied and videoed and just stood their. Ann Arbor schools have failed miserably not only to protect our children but to teach children of their accountability to what goes on around them. I have two rules for my kids. Never strike another person, but if someone hits you, hit them back harder, so they are afraid to hit you again. It is our experience that the Ann Arbor schools just make bullying situations worse by their ineffective handling of the matter. I also teach my children to stand up for the victims as we are a community of people and must help one another. I am proud to say, they do that. The school should be put on trial here.

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:47 p.m.

Keep in mind that the alleged incident was a punch to the face that was very brief in duration. There was not a sustained fight. Some of the students who witnessed the event followed the assistant principal back to the middle school to tell school officials what they saw.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 6:57 p.m.

The lackadaisical attitude of this article, makes it appear as if the attitude is "boys will be boys", when in fact this is yet another example of bullying in the Ann Arbor schools. Did you know that the school is legally responsible for the children from door to door? That means the family of the injured boy is within their rights to sue the school. In my opinion, they should! Ann Arbor talks the talk of having no tolerance for bullying, but in reality they close their eyes to what is going on. At 16 yrs old, this bully knows right from wrong and should be punished to the fullest extent of the law. "feeling bad" for his actions, is just not good enough. As a parent who's children have been severely bullied in the Ann Arbor schools, I feel it is up to the parents to demand action be taken to set the tone for "no tolerance", What is going to stop this kid from attacking another child? Maybe he will use a baseball bat next time. When do we as a society stop making excuses and say NO MORE!

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:42 p.m.

The definition of what exactly constitutes bullying is endlessly debatable, but as far as this story goes, I did ask the victim's father if he thought this was a case of bullying and he firmly said no. Just for the record.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 6:51 p.m.

Wow, good for the 14 yr-old. No ill feelings, no grudge...good for him. He may have gotten punched, but he is obviously the stronger kid here.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:50 p.m.

I thought, according to some people, the schools are best equipped to handle situations when young men assaults others on school property? But if that's the case, it seems that the limited consequences they're able to dish out aren't actually able to change their behavior and prevent further more serious problems. Most young men who get into fights or assault others aren't bothered much about missing school, which is really the worst punishment a school can give. The only effect here was that an innocent kid got beaten.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:49 p.m.

I would like to know why the 15 year old was not charged or suspended, and why the 16 was not expelled. It is my understanding that Ann Arbor Public Schools have a zero tolerance for bullying and violence policy, Did that change? From where I sit, this policy was only written because it looks good paper, and AAPS has absolutely no intention of actually enforcing it.

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:10 p.m.

It's unknown if the 15-year-old or the 16-year-old were suspended for this incident. School officials cannot release such information. Keep in mind that violating any school policies and breaking the law are two different things. I'm not sure what the 15-year-old could be charged with for allegedly calling the 14-year-old over and taping the incident.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 6:59 p.m.

Unless the parents take the school to court, you can count on nothing happening. These are weak, ineffective administrators, who do not want to do anything deemed controversial to hurt their job security.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 6:08 p.m.

Oh, they enforce it. AAPS will have the bully write a short assignment on why what he did may have hurt other people's feelings. Then he will be turned loose to terrorize other students again.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:41 p.m.

Poor kid :(. Who the crap are these evil kids who would do something like this? Evil, evil brats!

Danielle Arndt

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:37 p.m.

I am really impressed by the way the 14-year-old boy and his family handled this interview and their attitudes overall about the incident. The concern they show for the 16-year-old and their willingness to forgive and move on, despite the significant injuries and the seemingly random lashing out from the older boy... it's refreshing, for lack of a better word. They are keeping it in perspective, and I don't get the impression from the article that they're harboring a grudge about the incident. ... This was just something that struck me when reading the story.

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:15 p.m.

Well said, Danielle. I've spoken with the 14-year-old's family at length while reporting this story and what you say here fairly represents their feelings about the incident.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:07 p.m.

The 16 year old perp should have been expelled and tried as an adult. AAPS is far too easy on these punks, and I can assure you that there are many of them in the AAPS. A few days suspension and a slap on the wrist does nothing to stop this thug behavior. There are a number of these punks that populate the schools and they are not there to learn; they are there to wreak havoc. They need to be weeded out, kicked out for good and face the criminal justice system. Too much coddling goes on in AAPS due to fear of parental lawsuits. AAPS needs to take charge of its own school system, reinstate discipline across the board, and revise its policies.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4:42 p.m.

Sad point 1) That these "children" did not learn or was not taught that assaulting someone else simply because you feel like it is not a legitimate option. Sad point 2) that our children are taught to run and cower instead of doing something to stop such events. 16 yo vs 14 yo, disparity of force. 20 or more 14 yo vs 1 16 yo? We need to teach pack mentality not herd mentality to our children. The vicious ones learn it sooner than the ones that need it.

Ricardo Queso

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4:32 p.m.

That skews the discipline gap.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:05 p.m.



Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 3:28 p.m.

"The 16-year-old had been suspended from school earlier that day and witnesses told police he was looking for anybody to fight at the bus stop. "He was going to make sure he did something to be suspended about," a witness told police. Put him in general population. He can pick on someone his own size.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4 p.m.

He wasn't looking for "anybody" to fight, he was looking for someone smaller and weaker like cowards tend to do.

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 3:15 p.m.

It looks like the court hearing is actually set for this afternoon. I plan on being there.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4:59 p.m.

You guys should get lunch together and then go check it out....make it a date.

Kyle Feldscher

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 3:19 p.m.

Thanks, John. (He told me it was at 9 a.m., guys. Blame him.)

Kyle Feldscher

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 2:36 p.m.

I went to court today for this hearing and it ended up not happening. We'll follow up and see what's going on.

Usual Suspect

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 2:07 p.m.

I need the Board of Education to chime in on this so I know what opinion I'm supposed to have on it.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:47 p.m.

Where's the ACLU when you need them? They shouldnt be busy since the kid with the crutch plead guilty.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:42 p.m.

Charge him as an adult.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:41 p.m.

And this 16-year old was not expelled??? I mean, seriously, what would it take to get expelled????


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:39 p.m.

So you can't mention the "discipline gap" without getting deleted? Wow.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:39 p.m.

This is disturbing in the extreme. What's described is a premeditated attack meant to do significant bodily harm to an innocent minor. Why is the perp not being charged as an adult? Thank goodness I don't have a child attending Huron with this violent individual.

Dirty Mouth

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:22 p.m.

This type of villainous and anti-social behavior has no place in and around our schools.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:45 p.m.

This is a very frightening article for us as parents and for society as a whole. This was a "random attack" this young man was looking for someone to hurt and he did exactly that. My children attended Scarlett and it is very concerning about even letting your child walk home. Thank god for Mr. Broom and the woman that helped the young boy. This young man (not a child) needs to go through the criminal system and punished, just like many 15 or 16 year-olds are.. What will happen when this boy is "provoked" who will be on the receiving end (again)? My child attends Huron, what if they bump him in the hall on a bad day? This is very concerning. Anger management classes must be a part of this process. I am so sorry for the Scarlett student and I feel that he and his family I can't even imagine what they went through, thank god he is okay.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:43 p.m.

This story is disturbing at best. It sounds like this kid may be getting a tap on the wrist and his accomplice (the recorder) is getting off scott free! I'm not saying lock them up forever and throw away the key but seriously? I definitely agree with anger management and some ongoing reform efforts. This poor 14 year old! And this is not "normal behavior" between older and younger kids. So every time this kid has a bad day society has to worry about how he's going to sort it out? He's only going to get bigger and stronger as well as face more adversities as he grows older.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:37 p.m.

Where is the parents of the attacker culpability in ??

Usual Suspect

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 2:20 p.m.

Agree with Billy. For example, we have graffiti vandals in this town who are screaming out for somebody to enforce boundaries and structure in their lives with every spray can they open.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 1:02 p.m.

lol @ any "bad parents" who would neg this comment... Your child's behavior is VERY MUCH dependent on their "mentors" and "teachers" which are parents first and foremost. Parents need to be directly held responsible for the behavior of their children.....OH WAIT THEY LEGALLY ARE...the law just has to actually act...


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:28 p.m.

I imagine the story about the sister was made up so the kid appeared to have a true reason for his actions. I have to wonder why there is all this rhetoric around bullying and then something like this happens and it's dealt with pretty poorly. I'm not a bleeding heart, but if you want this kid to understand the magnitude of what he did, on top of the charges, he should be in some sort of anger management program. And the kid who recorded the attack should have been, at least, suspended. How are other students going to understand that being part of something like this is wrong? If we want kids to understand bullying is wrong, everyone involved should be punished and a reward system of praise should be in place for those who try to prevent or report such incidents.. And why was the attacker not expelled? That's just crazy.

Usual Suspect

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 12:37 a.m.

But only if they're white, of course. Otherwise, the BoE would object.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:17 p.m.

I couldn't agree with you more. Well said! Both boys should be punished. Although the attacker should have a steeper legal punishment. Make an example of them. Maybe the other kids will think twice before behaving this way. Our school will suspend all involved even the victims.. My son was attacked in class, Did not fight back just tried to push the kid off him and still got suspended for a week and no he didn't instigate the attack. But the school wanted to make a point of no tolerance so they used both of them to set an example.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:57 a.m.

glad that wasn't my child who was beaten like that. we'd be having a totally different discussion this morning.


Mon, Apr 22, 2013 : 2:36 p.m.

Got that right!!!!!

Jan Titi

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:51 a.m.

Very confusing article. A fight in the hallway? What does that have to do with this fight at the bus stop? (I wouldn't call it a fight- it was an assault).Who dropped the 15 year old and the 16 year old at the bus stop? This attack happened after 3.30 P.M. The 16 year old was suspended earlier in the day but the article states that it's not clear if the suspension was related to the attack(?). This was a random attack but later the 16 year old said he thought the 14 year old had been bothering his sister. Both the 16 year old and the 15 year old who took the pictures should be named in the paper. They both should be punished.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4:32 p.m.

The confusing part of the article just says "the" fight in the hall, which was never mentioned before or after.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 2:37 p.m.

So if you are suspended for a fight, the bus takes you home? Parents aren't called in and required to take the student home? Seems like that is problem number one here---exposing other kids to someone who was just suspended for violence!

John Counts

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:21 p.m.

Hi Jan Titi, I will try an answer your questions as best as I can. The 16-year-old was involved in a completely unrelated fight at school earlier that day for which he was suspended. School officials would not disclose details of that incident. It is believed the 16-year-old was dropped off by the bus at the bus stop. The suspension for the earlier fight was his motivation for trying to find someone to fight, according to the police report. This is spelled out in more detail in the article.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:38 a.m.

I feel like this would be an appropriate case to put through the criminal system. If the events described are indeed true, it's hard for me to imagine how it's safe for society to allow the 16 year old boy to safely re-enter society. While we might attempt to "reform" him - and who knows, maybe it's possible - the seeds of these actions lie deep in this boy's psyche. "A tiger doesn't change his stripes," so to speak.

Robert E.

Sat, Apr 20, 2013 : 1:16 a.m.

Are you kidding me go navy? Hes 16 years old! A tiger doesnt change his stripes??? Nonsense! The kid deserves serious consequences but not allowed to re-enter society? You mean to tell me you havent learned a thing or two since you were 16 years old???

Eric S

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:31 a.m.

"parent's worst nightmare"? No. A nightmare it might be, but not worst by far. If you're going to be melodramatic, at least be plausibly accurate.

Jon Saalberg

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:28 a.m.

" does not name juveniles involved in criminal cases." Not so - you have no problem doing that if they are charged as an adult.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:24 p.m.

If they are charged as an adult, then they would presumably be considered as an "adult", which in that case there would be no juvenile rule to follow? Not being snide, just assuming that's the case.

Paula Gardner

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:33 a.m.

You're right. I'm changing the story to reflect that.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 11:26 a.m.

Any word yet on the AA BoE requesting the prosecutor drop charges? Do you know if the Ann Arbor Concerned Citizens for Justice group intends to protest any charges?

Robert E.

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 9:29 p.m.

Yes I see jcj what you and a2 citizen are trying to say...its a sarcastic and mean-spirited attempt to ridicule the citizens all seriousness though...the context and circumstances of these two situations could not be more different...effective use and application of juvenile justice requires the courts to consider each case in an especially nuanced and very deliberate fashion...making sure that justice is served but also not simply throwing away the life of a child who can potentially be rehabilitated and become an upstanding member of the community...way too many children are never given that chance, especially if their family is living in poverty...


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 8:01 p.m.

Robert My point is this.If the Concerned Citizens for Justice did not think someone swinging a crutch at someone on the ground did not need to be charged, then why wouldn't they come forward and try to get this 16 year old off without having to face the consequences of his actions?

Robert E.

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 7:10 p.m.

Nah jcj I just think you're is possible for one to have a different opinion than yours isnt it? That citizens group was formed soley in response to the football game incident. Please be careful what you wish for, you or someone you love may just need one of us "bleeding hearts" someday...


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 5:33 p.m.

Robert I suspect if you don't get my point, It could slap you in the face and you still would not admit it!

Robert E.

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 4:27 p.m.

No jcj...we dont get your point...its a completely different situation...please educate us "bleeding hearts" some more...


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 3:50 p.m.

Afterall, he's just a baby.


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:39 p.m.

Philly I would suspect the point is that this was a 16 year old and it would not be unusual for a particular bleeding heart group to ask they he be given a break. Get my point?


Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 12:22 p.m.

This incident is completely unrelated to the Huron-Pioneer football brawl, so what's your point?

Nick Danger

Fri, Apr 19, 2013 : 10:37 a.m.

He 'felt bad' for his actions? give me a breakThis was an intentional vicious attack.Unfortunately,it's doubtful any real consequeces will be be handed out by the juvenile court.