Friday, October 19, 2012

Football player accused of hitting half-paralyzed 14 yr-old with cerebral palsy

Second Update: WLOX published this story on its website. The story includes an interview with the victim and his mother. The victim says the whole thing started when he was called a retard. The Superintendent issued this statement:

"It has also come to our attention that some person(s) have reported to the traditional and social media and have displayed photographs as well as given partial or inaccurate accounts of events believed to have happened at our school. Because of confidentiality rights of our students, we cannot publicly respond to the charges and accusations that some people have made. We have been and continue to cooperate with all law enforcement agencies as this incident is investigated, and we encourage the public to allow the official agencies to take such action as the law allows and is deemed appropriate by those agencies. Out of respect to our students and George County, we encourage no further gossip on social media sites"


JJ stands by everything posted as I consider my sources to be very reliable.

Update: Spoken to reliable sources in George County. It is alleged the defendant hit him in the face with one punch. The one punch was enough to knock him out of his wheelchair and put him on the ground. It also alleged the disabled student threw or dropped a coke can (CP victims have poor muscular control) and said the word "bitch".* The case will probably be handled in Youth Court. It seems the only applicable charge may be simple assault as there was no weapon used nor is there an attempted murder statute.

Original post: Warning: This stuff is graphic and the pictures are bloody in nature. No way to sugar coat this as a football player in George County is accused of beating up a half-paralyzed kid suffering from cerebal palsy. The Sun-Herald reported:

LUCEDALE - Authorities have confirmed a complaint has been lodged alleging a special-needs student was assaulted by another student Thursday at George County High School.

Shonna Pierce of the George County Sheriff's Office said deputies were told an unnamed student allegedly thought the disabled student had thrown a soda can at him so he beat up the wheelchair-bound student. (KF note: That is the story given to my sources as well as the disabled student called him a name.).

A hospital emergency room called the sheriff's office about the incident, but since it happened on a school campus, the school resource office is leading the investigation at the present, Pierce said.

School security chief Al Hillman said any information about the incident would have to come from the district superintendent's office.

The district office could not be immediately reached for comment Friday morning.

The injured student reportedly was released from the hospital.

Article


These photos and messages are from the mother's Facebook page. She encouraged people to share them. Here are her messages:

This is my 14 year old son Austin Stokes. He attends George County High and was beaten by a senior twice his size. Austin has cerebral palsy and he is only able to use the right side of his body as the left side is paralyzed. I was told by officials that SIMPLE assault is the only charge the attacker will be charged with. Austin suffers from seizures, is legally blind and could not defend himself. The offender has not been arrested and I ask, how is this fair? Where in the world is it ok to punch a special needs child in the face?? He was hit so hard that he became airborne, spun around and busted his mouth on the concrete and was unconscious!! Something has to be done.

We are home and Austin is resting.. I will make sure that boy gets what he deserves. There is never a reason for someone to put their hands on a disabled kid. Jeffery Blackston is a piece of shit!!!!!


A pic of the alleged perp is posted at the bottom of the post.
*I hesitated to quote the word "bitch" but I did not want the victim to be accused of making a racist remark when he clearly did not do so.

Last note: Dear Jim Keith, there are plenty of good lawyers down on the coast that can represent this district.







53 comments:

Anonymous said...

Hate crime?

KaptKangaroo said...

I saw this earlier. This is one of the most callous stories I've ever read. I'd like to use stronger words, but I am speechless.

My prayers go out to Austin. Please let him know that there are those out there who believe in him.

Anderson said...

The other question besides prosecution is, assuming these facts pan out, will the attacker be dismissed from the football team?

That's how you *really* figure out where a school's administration's heart is.

bill said...

They must have an important game tonight. Look for the investigation to start on Monday.

Anonymous said...

Alright I am a student at George County High School. Here is what happened as I saw it five feet away when it happened. The senior is also special ed. What he did was a reaction someone hit him in the head with a can he turned around and punched him one time. Austin did not curse him. Austin is not in a wheelchair he can walk just fine. The senior did what he did because out of his many disorders he has one that involves anger problems. They were both special needs kids and Austin did not become airborne. I saw it and that is what happened.

Shadowfax said...

Nothing like waiting for the facts to come out before getting all worked up. Sounds to me like one special needs student was hit in the head with a can thrown by another and turned and retaliated. I hope the witness (above) will make himself available to those conducting the witch hunt, I mean the investigation.

Leigh Anne said...

So "Anonymous" are you the teacher or one of the many that didn't step in to aid Austin???????

Evelyn said...

If they guy has anger issues, he needs to get help, AFTER he gets out of jail. If he is able to play football, and from what I have read he has a scholarship to MS State, he is smart enough to know you can't just physically assault someone with repercussions.

Anonymous said...

this comment is for the last "anonymous" person that REALLY thought that their post was ok to write. first of all it sounds like you are justifying what just took place, i don't care if it didn't leave a mark at all, violence is NEVER the answer. and for you to say that part of his disability is anger problems, that's a joke and you REALLY need to brush up on your psychological terminology before you get on here and look stupid. anger problems can be fixed/curved/dealt with...it is FOR SURE not a physical disability and it isn't even close to a mental disability such as depression or autism. anger is a choice unlike autism or missing a limb. i don't even care what the REAL story is or if what is printed is correct or not, pictures don't lie and that boy should be punished!

Anonymous said...


KF, you are really doing well if you have george county h.s. students are reading you...

Anonymous said...

I saw it and that is what happened.

I am an Intern at the Jackson Free Press. Please contact me to share your side of the story.

You can reach me at intern@www.bullshit.com.

Look forward to hearing from you.

Evelyn said...

My comment should have said WITHOUT repercussions.

Anonymous said...

"Leigh Anne" I'm a student and if your trying to pawn the fact no one helped Austin dont pawn it off on me. The senior is has special needs just like Austin if I would have hit him the headline would have said freshman hit special ed kid after the special ed kid hit another special ed kid and I would be the one every one was mad at and Austin is just at fault of it as Jeffrey aka the senior Austin isn't in a wheel chair either and has nothing wrong with his mind he just has physical disabilities not mental disabilities like Jeffrey. Austin knew what he was doing when he through the can I'm not saying Jeffrey did what was right I'm saying what happened happened and I will not go so shallow as to hit a special ed kid so Leigh Anne ask yourself would you hit a special needs kid

KaptKangaroo said...

In re:JFP comment.

Golf clap!!!!

Anonymous said...

Alright if Yall are getting mad at me for telling the truth then it sounds like to me Yall need to get yalls big girl panties on and deal with it the senior is bipolar,mentally retarded, and he has no scholarship and he is not a football player anymore so he couldn't get a scholarship what so ever and the guy that told me that bullshit.com it is what happened because I saw it Im a freshman I have the same lunch wave as they do it happened at lunch if Yall want the truth there it is if Yall are too hard headed to believe it get over it and that boy got punished I haven't even took sides and Yall are acting like I took Jeffrey's I agree he needs to be punished but argueing with a 14 year old isn't going to solve anything

Anonymous said...

If Yall are mad because I'm telling the truth and its not what you want to hear then oh well I'm not saying what Jeffrey did was write and photos don't lie Jeffrey does need to get punished but taking out on me a "14 year old" isn't write either ,especially for saying it just like it happened I have known Austin for 3 years now and Jeffrey doesn't have a scholarship because he doesn't play football any more and he has been kicked out of school for a little while and when he comes back he is as good as dead because of people like Yall its like putting gasoline on a fire

meople said...

Hey man chill out... Your age proves your more mature than 3/4 of the people here who tend to look down and turn up there nose at actual ideal opposition. It is more of a liberal synopsis but hell 3/4 of the so called conservatives here wouldn't have a clue how to conduct or how to win an actual debate.

Anonymous said...

So this senior that is a 6'5" 240lb DEFENSIVE END on the football is a Special Needs student? What a fucking liar!

Anonymous said...

... but hell 3/4 of the so called conservatives here wouldn't have a clue how to conduct or how to win an actual debate.

Whatever you say Scooter. Ain't seen diddly doo from you pally.

Anonymous said...

Ah, the wisdom of Shadow straddling the fence yet again.

Kingfish said...

Wasn't this football coach at Quitman last year?

Anonymous said...

Alright to that said " so this senior a 6'5 240lb DEFENSIVE END on football special needs student" what a fucking liar" he doesn't play on the damn football team for the last time done said it ten times how do I know because I'm on the damn football team yes he did play but not this year he decided not to and yes he is a special needs kid why would he be on the football team if he is special needs because they cannot discriminate against anyone for color size religion and mental capacity aka if your special needs you can letter from the doctor saying you can play and they have to let you try out

KaptKangaroo said...

POPCORN!

Anonymous said...

WLBT had a bit on it as well. Victim claimed he was called a "retard", may have thrown coke can (missed a bit there). School district said to be filing charges.

Anonymous said...

Hey 14-year old student guy - you may want to research something called the Stockholm Syndrome, which you seem to display in spades. Patty Hearst probably won't ring a bell with you, but she had it, too. You're identifying with and defending a really terrible human being, and you need to reflect on that. What he did was utterly monstrous, and your attempts to draw some weird moral equivalence between the victim and the perpetrator only make you look pitiful and wimpy.

Anonymous said...

God Forbid the color issue was reverse! ACLU and Jesse Jackson would be beating there chest on this!!! This is BS! This is getting old real fast!

Col. Reb Sez said...

To the 14-year-old student: Thank you for posting. I'm sorry some people have heaped abuse on you for sharing the truth about what happened.

To the rest of you: Yes, a 6-5 former football player can be a special needs student. I think based on what the 14YO has said the guy is borderline retarded. And yes, having anger management issues is a real disability within the school systems, and if this is written in a Special Ed student's IEP (Individual Educational Plan) then it may not even be legal to remove him from the school. Removing him may create a cause of action. We may not like this, but that is the law.

I suspect that the 14-year-old doesn't particularly like being forced to go to school with violent, retarded people. My guess is that it would suit him fine if the guy was removed permanently. But he simply provided information that the guy was provoked. Was his response proportionate? Of course not! But then he apparently has a mental defect which prevents him from reacting in a proportionate manner, or at least makes it unlikely that he will react appropriately.

As soon as this guy turns 18 he will do something violent and end up in jail or dead. But until then the schools are stuck with him. That's why a lot of parents are sending their children to private schools.

Leave the 14-year-old student alone.

Anonymous said...

Do any of you "high school kids" know how to use punctuation? Geez it's like reading the words of a kindergarten kid talking at 100 mph with no breaths just on and on and on can you see how difficult this is to read its irritating and hard to follow isn't it

To those of you who are defending this monster.......think of this for a second. If your child was blind, unable to control his motor function (due to cp) called a retard and beat up, would you not seek justice for him?! Nothing warrants punching a special needs child in the face. Nothing.

Anonymous said...

The kid that "saw" the incident. You really must concentrate on your studies more. Your grammar is reprehensible. No matter who threw not through a can it is no reason to knock someone out and leave a goose egg like that. The kid that has anger issues needs to be put away for a while and get that under control.

Anonymous said...

Respectfully, Col. Reb. I have to disagree with your complete assessment.

It is an anonymous poster. Your assumption of fact by anonymous poster in the face of overwhelming evidence is presumptive.

But, then again, who gives a shiv?

Shadowfax said...

Ad hominem abounds. As important as this particular issue is in today's world, it's not about punctuation or how to spell 'threw'. Nor is it about the supposition that one special needs student should stand down and consider the consequences of the action he is about to take when he decides to pop another one for throwing a loaded can at him.

As to the mental midget that suggested I'm straddling the fence, I suggest we should all 'straddle the fence' until all the facts come out and a complete investigation has been accomplished.

I'm hopeful that whoever conducts the investigation won't discount the testimony of witnesses because they didn't properly punctuate their statements.

Congrats to Kingfish for branching out to a new dimension. And let's be sure to acknowledge Kangaroot's 'golf clap' and request for popcorn.

Shadowfax said...


"Football player accused of hitting half-paralyzed 14 yr-old with cerebral palsy"

Boy! Is that a pejorative, loaded headline or WHAT?! Straight out of the Bill Minor and Jerry Mitchell jug of inciteful headlines.

Anonymous said...

Col Reb: good points.

But if his (their?) grammar and spelling and sentence construction are typical then it seems this school district has a lot of other problems too. How many of you would interview a job applicant who submitted a job application that looked like that? Don't even imagine it would survive the first glance in a college admissions office.

We've been treated to a couple of posts about the superintendents in Rankin & Desoto Counties on this blog recently. If this guy is cut from similar cloth we can only imagine how badly this will turn out.

meople said...

Grammer correction is a liberal tool to defer subject while losing points at hand.

Anonymous said...

meople is back, and batting 0 for 2 today.

meople said...

My question to you my friend would be what other service does correcting someone else's grammer serve than to fill your elementary ego or to change subject. That's all I have this month.

reximus said...

*grammar

Anonymous said...

First of all....Austin is BLIND is he not? I'm curious then...how did a blind 14 year old manage to hit this 6'4 240 lb.special needs ex football player with a empty can? Was it a lucky shot? I mean if your BLIND you do have a definite handicap! I can SEE where that might be a difficult task....something not kosher!

Col. Reb Sez said...

To Anonymous 12:33:

Austin's mother describes him as "legally blind." This is vision which cannot be corrected to better than 20/200 with lenses. I have 20/350 on one eye and 20/650 in the other, fortunately correctable. But I can see well enough without my glasses to get around and do for a few minutes in the morning, for example. I might leave my glasses in my hotel room and go swimming. Austin's mother is trying to paint him in the most sympathetic light, and I don't blame her, but the fact that Austin is legally blind (with no more knowledge) does not mean he is like the guy who you see using a white cane to cross the street.

I would be interested in finding out whether:
1. Austin was actually in a wheelchair. This story says yes, a poster who identified himself as a witness says no;
2. Austin assaulted his assailant by throwing a soda can at him, rather than accidentally dropping it or spilling it.

Neither of the above excuse what the assailant did, but it is considered more excusable to hit someone out of a wheelchair than someone in one; it's considered more excusable to his someone after being intentionally assaulted than to assault someone after being unintentionally bumped.

I'd also like to know whether the assailant has attacked other students. Kids with a propensity to commit acts of serious violence shouldn't be allowed to mingle with the general student population. (Unfortunately, that's not what federal law provides for).

Anonymous said...

I hope the kid that hit the boy gets the Shit kicked out of him , they are not going to have a special needs kid on a football team. What kind of Shit it that! I hope the young man is ok. That boy needs beat then his parents need the Shit kicked out of them . As soon as I herd about this I was so pissed and still am.

KaptKangaroo said...

If a shadow falls in the forest, does anyone really see it?

I've held back any judgement until all the facts are in.

Anonymous said...

Yep. When they aren't killing each other, committing cowardly attacks on helpless folks is what they turn their attention too. The hood culture is ravaging civilized society and enslaving the vast majority of the black community.

Anonymous said...

This is the last update given from the local news.

Posted: Oct 19, 2012 6:19 PM CDT
Updated: Oct 20, 2012 8:41 AM CDT
By Trang Pham-Bui - bio | email

GEORGE COUNTY, MS (WLOX) - The pictures posted on Facebook have everybody talking. How did a boy with Cerebral Palsy end up bruised and bloodied at school?

According to the victim and his mom, a derogatory word may have sparked the attack. The boy's mom said her son was bullied and she wants justice.

Fourteen-year-old Austin Stokes said he was punched at George County High Thursday. Austin has Cerebral Palsy and is legally blind. He said it all started when the student who hit him called him a bad name.

"I was just walking in the breeze way, and I threw a Coke can at him and then he punched me," said Austin Stokes.

When asked why he threw the soda can, Austin replied, "Because he called me a retard."

Austin's left eye is bruised and practically swollen shut. There's a huge knot on his head and scrapes and cuts on his face and hands. The George County High freshman said he does not know the boy who hit him.

"That's all I could do was cry," said Austin's mom, Lori Dees, describing the moment she saw her son's bloody face.

She said several people have told her the punch was so hard, it knocked Austin off his feet. He fell to the ground and chipped a tooth. Like so many people, she wondered why someone would do this to her son, who can barely walk and see because of his disabilities.

"Just anger. I was angry that someone could do this to a special needs child, someone who can't defend themselves," said Dees.

Dees said the name calling is a form of bullying.

"It just hurts me to have to see him go through the bullying. I was told that he called Austin a retard. And that Austin, whenever he hears people talk about him like that, he gets upset and cries and says he feels stupid," said Dees.

Dee said she wants the school to file more than just simple assault charges against the student who hit her son. She also wants that student expelled from school.

"I feel that he needs to have some time in jail," said Austin.

When asked how he feels about going back to school, Austin replied, "Not safe."

"Being a mom, I want to see justice. I want it to be made right for Austin," said Dees.

George County Schools Superintendent Debbie Harrell sent WLOX this statement:

"State law prohibits our school district from publicly discussing specific matters involving students. The school has conducted a thorough investigation into the incident, and has taken appropriate action that is consistent with the Mississippi School Safety Manual and the policies and procedures of the George County School District."

Harrell also had a message for the thousands of people on social media sites like Facebook who are reading and writing about the attack.


"It has also come to our attention that some person(s) have reported to the traditional and social media and have displayed photographs as well as given partial or inaccurate accounts of events believed to have happened at our school. Because of confidentiality rights of our students, we cannot publicly respond to the charges and accusations that some people have made. We have been and continue to cooperate with all law enforcement agencies as this incident is investigated, and we encourage the public to allow the official agencies to take such action as the law allows and is deemed appropriate by those agencies. Out of respect to our students and George County, we encourage no further gossip on social media sites."

Copyright 2012 WLOX. All rights reserved.

Anonymous said...

I do not think Austin is in a wheelchair. I was looking at his mothers facebook page and he seems to go hunting with a gun and such. Not in a wheelchair or anything. I am trying to figure out if he is blind how does he use a gun? https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?fbid=262443583814153&set=pb.100001455418317.-2207520000.1350810111&type=1&permPage=1 just curious!

Anonymous said...

I, too, want to thank the student who witnessed this incident for posting.

Please pay no attention to those who attacked you for posting what clearly is an accurate witness account as facts are unfolding confirm.

Unfortunately, not all adults grow up to be mature and responsible. And, some adults don't know they are ignorant, either. The person who doesn't know that a lack of impulse control can be the symptom of a medical condition and the football expert are certainly posters for ignorance.

That you stepped forward to relate the event as you saw it occur is an act of maturity for which I commend you.

The rest of you , who are supposed to be mature adults, should have enough sense to follow the Superintendent's advice and let an investigation go forward. Unless, of course, you have gotten around HIPPA and have the medical records and social history of both these young men!

Grown ups don't haul off and choose up sides without knowing all the FACTS!

Kingfish said...

Uh huh. I stand by what I posted. I also remember during the Demond case his friends were on FB saying there was another side and the truth would come out, blah blah blah. I'm still waiting for that one.

Anonymous said...

Maybe so, KF, but it seems to me that things worked better once upon a time when those blessed with a good education and/or good sense were willing to let an investigation take place before taking a position.
We called it " minding our own business" and not turning every " molehill into a mountain".
The mother wasn't there, for certain, so let's get those who were witness under oath. Let's let the medical claims be documented.
And, whether this young man is defending a friend or not, the attacks on him on this blog were unwarranted...especially from adults who should know better. Caution him on the importance of giving true witness, if you want, but these comments are unworthy of grown ups.

Anonymous said...

Since it's "Stamp Out Domestic Abuse" week, let's all remind people that redneck husbands who make their wives look like this also deserve the benefit of the doubt. We must all wait until all of the facts are in before we judge the perpetrator. And if the perpetrator turns out to be really stupid or perhaps even retarded, then by God LEAVE HIM ALONE!

Anonymous said...

Oh Puhleez 2:30 pm!

I don't want men charged with abuse falsely simply because women are usually physically at a disadvantage.

When two guys get in an altercation, are you suggesting the one who wins should always be charged because he's more capable of winning?

Shall we set physical restrictions on big guys with good eyesight and just say they can never get in a fight?

Crappy analogy



Shadowfax said...

Kangaroo: You'd do better at reversing directions if you could go back and delete your earlier posts. You didn't wait for the facts at all. Your initial post, followed by your succinct 'golf clap' clearly indicated you bought the ranch early. Kangaroos are well known for jumping ~ In this case, to conclusions.

Anonymous said...

If this is an incident regarding a special needs kid throwing a Coke can at a much bigger special needs kid and then getting punched, the lynch mob mentality needs to stop.

Yes, punching someone with cerebral palsy is reprehensible. At the same time, both of them are responsible for their own actions. If the student with cerebral palsy hit the other one with an object first, then simple assault is a reasonable charge for the student who punched him.

Question: Should the student with cerebral palsy also be charged with assault if the Coke can connected? Think about it from a legal standpoint.

Anonymous said...

A bully gets others to take his side with the threat if they do not, they too will suffer verbal and/or physical assaults from the bully and those who have chosen to side with the bully.

When adults, like on this site or in the media, take a side without having witnessed the incident or having all the facts, they are modeling the bully pattern of behavior.

We have become a nation of bullies in our divisiness so is it any surprise that our children are modeling that behavior?

We exaggerate every mistake or slight or weakness in others with whom we disagree in any minor or major way and set ourselves up as individually superior at every opportunity.

We find excuses and rationalizations for every personal error or the errors of our " friends" but excuse nothing in others.

And, we deride/criticize those in authority who try to follow rules of order.

One could not describe bullying any better than that.



Anonymous said...

Wherever this school is, they've obviously cut spelling and basic grammar from the curriculum!

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