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Student still receiving medical treatment after severe beating

Published:Tuesday | October 3, 2023 | 10:03 AM

A 14-year-old is still undergoing medical treatment several days after a brutal assault by a schoolmate. The incident occurred when the youngster accidentally stepped on another boy's shoe while trying to regain his balance. Reportedly, the boy punched him in both eyes, causing him to fall, and continued to deliver blows. The injured boy was initially taken to a nearby doctor by his friends but continues to receive tests and treatments due to the severity of his injuries.

Brutal beating

Traumatised family struggling to find machine for brain scan after vicious attack at school

30 Sep 2023/Janet Silvera/ Senior Gleaner Writer janet.silvera@gleanerjm.com

A 14-YEAR-OLD B.B. Coke High School student, who was beaten severely by one of his schoolmates, remains hospitalised while his alleged attacker has been taken into custody by the Junction police in St Elizabeth.

The boy’s mother, Shantel Golbourne, says an X-ray shows that air is in her son’s brain after he was punched in both eyes and kicked continuously in his face by a grade 11 student.

“He was standing in a line, and he almost fell while moving off. While falling, he stepped on the toes of his attacker, who responded by punching him in both eyes,” Golbourne told The Gleaner, relating an account she was given of what led to the assault.

“The boy turned around, punched him in one eye, then punched him in the other eye, and he blacked out, and when he blacked out and was on the ground, the boy stepped up in his face,” Golbourne added. “He was on the ground, and blood was spewing from his nose.”


She said her son was beaten to a frazzle and was rendered unconscious as a result of the incident, which reportedly took place shortly after 3 p.m. on Thursday afternoon at the school.

According to Golbourne, her son had never seen the 16-year-old before, although they attend the same school.

The ninth-grader was carried to a doctor’s office by three of his friends, who lifted him through the streets of Junction, still in his unconscious state.

Golbourne alleged that at least three security guards at the school knew what had happened but did not advise the authorities. Neither did they seek to help her son, she claimed.

The 14-year-old’s face is unrecognisable and he is barely seeing out of his eyes. Doctors have ordered a brain scan; however, the family says that they have not been able to find any laboratory that has a working machine to do the scan in St Elizabeth or Manchester.

“I screamed when I saw my son. I was in a state of shock to see what he had done to my son, who only stepped back because he did not want to fall,” said Golbourne.

Tamika Holness, the young victim’s aunt, alleged that when she found out what had happened to her nephew and tried to alert the principal of the school, efforts to get information from a teacher proved futile.

“When I called the teacher, her response was, ‘Why are you calling me? I am not the principal, I am not the dean of discipline, and I don’t know anyone by the name of [victim’s name redacted]’, and [we] are not supposed to call her number,” said Holness. “That teacher should not be in the classroom; she is uncaring and unprofessional.”

The family is saddened even more by the fact that they sent the youngster to get an education, but instead he could have lost his life.

In the meantime, they are already spending money to get the necessary tests done for the youngster, but Holness said that the brain scan alone ranges between $34,000 and $39,000.

It is understood that the alleged attacker was turned over in to police custody by his mother.


High-level sources at the school told The Gleaner that the alleged attacker, who carries a moniker depicting the devil, has previously been suspended by the institution on more than one occasion as a result of constantly fighting, and is disrespectful and verbally abusive to his peers and teachers.

Acting principal of B.B. Coke High School, Liteashia Gallimore, would not comment on the issue when contacted.

“The matter is being investigated, and moreover, it would be a matter for the school board. The school board chairman is aware of the situation, and is expected to make a statement on the incident,” she offered.

Cetany Holness, the Jamaica Labour Party councillor for the Junction division and chairman for the school, later labelled the incident as “most unfortunate”.

“This is a most unfortunate incident that must not be tolerated in any school. It can’t be that love no longer exists. Students must take care of each other. For a student to step on your shoes and you react to him in such a vicious manner is most unfortunate,” Holness said.

The chairman added that a report has been made to the education ministry and that the school board would act swiftly have the accused student appear before the personnel committee.

Holness admitted that the 11th grade student came to the institution with serious behavioural problems between grades seven and nine and was referred to the guidance counselling unit.

He had calmed down until Thursday when the incident occurred, the chairman said.

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