Magnolia West freshman says school staff didn’t protect her from fight

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by Drew Karedes / KHOU 11 News

khou.com

Posted on May 16, 2013 at 9:59 PM

Updated Friday, May 17 at 7:27 AM

MAGNOLIA – A freshman at Magnolia West High School believes school staff did not protect her from a fight on campus.

15-year-old Tony Driver said a classmate threatened her by text message around 10:30 a.m. Thursday morning.  Driver says she went to the principal’s office to show him the messages.

She said a secretary told her that the principal was at lunch and to leave a note.

“[She said] you need to come back after class,” said Driver.

Driver says a confrontation ensued before she could go back to principal’s office.

“I was just standing there talking to one of my friends, and she came and tapped on my back. She said, ‘I told you to watch your back,’” said Driver.

Driver said the girl who was after her is a former friend.

According to Driver, that former friend wanted to brawl and sent her a text that told her to “watch herself.”

“I told her, don’t text me. I don’t want contact with you,” explained Driver.

Driver said cell phone video proves that the other girl started the brawl at school. In the video, you can see the other girl push Driver, and things escalate quickly.

“I maybe hit her back once. I couldn’t do anything,” said Driver.

The video shows the other girl kicking Driver while she’s down on the ground.

Driver’s older sister says what’s most upsetting in the 25-second video is a school custodian standing around and not doing anything.

“I was told by the principal’s office that the custodians are not allowed to intervene. That’s fine, however, you can yell, you can wave your arms, you can pick up the walkie-talkie she clearly had on her hip,” said Driver’s older sister Stevie.

The fight was eventually broken up by deputy constables who patrol the campus.

Driver was left with scratches, bruises and a citation for disorderly conduct.

“Even though she hit me first, because I hit her back, it was the same punishment for both of us,” added Driver. “The principal told me, he was like, why didn’t you just walk away?”

Driver’s mother believes the texts and the video should be enough to clear her daughter.

“When you’re hit, it’s a natural reaction, you’re going to defend yourself,” said her mother Quita Driver. “It’s very upsetting, and then made to feel like you’ve done something wrong.”

Driver has been suspended from school. She says she and the other girl now have to go to court to explain their sides of the story.

“I don’t want to be around her because I have a feeling that she will do it again,” said Driver.

The Magnolia Independent School District said the incident is under investigation.

A spokesperson said the district does not comment on “student issues.”

The district released a brief statement. It said in part:

 “Magnolia ISD is committed to providing a safe environment for all students. Since this incident involves confidential student information, no further comment will be released.”

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