MURPHYSBORO, IL (KFVS) - A video of a scuffle between two southern Illinois middle school students has garnered a lot of attention on social media and raised questions about the incident.
The video shows two Murphysboro Middle School students in an alleyway. A 13-year-old boy stands over a 12-year-old boy who is on the ground. The older boy appears to kick the younger boy in the face while several young people watch and film the act.
The 12-year-old suffered injuries to the face from being punched and pushed to the ground. Both boys said there was an attempt to kick the younger boy in the face but it was blocked by his arms. The families say the incident was sparked following a football game at recess.
The 12-year-old's mother, Tiffany Thomas, said her son was a victim of bullying.
"He waited until he was away from school," Thomas said. "He followed him with the intention of kicking his butt in the alleyway."
The accused 13-year-old's mother, Barb Eisenhower, said her son made a mistake but was provoked earlier. Eisenhower said the younger boy pushed her son while at school.
"I know that my son was not right for what he did," Eisenhower said. "I'm not saying the other boy was wrong for what he did. Who's to say?"
Eisenhower and her son apologized for his actions and she said her son is being punished. The 13-year-old is being transferred to another school, has been "grounded," and have offered to pay medical expenses.
"I think it was a couple of kids being kids, really," Eisenhower said. "Maybe both of them provoked it a little bit. I'm not putting the blame on anybody."
Murphysboro Middle School Principal Jeff Keener said the district does not comment on incidents involving students.
The Murphysboro Police Department has investigated the incident as a battery between two juveniles and turned it over to the Jackson County State's Attorney's Office.