Photo credits: WXYZ, Detroit
A mother in Canton, Michigan is dealing with her state’s Wayne County Juvenile Court in regard to her 10-year-old son.
According to Yahoo News, Cameishi Lindley, the mother of Bryce Lindley (pictured) received a phone call on July 24 from her local juvenile justice authority.
Lindley was told that her son Bryce was facing first-degree assault charges over an incident at his school, which occurred in late April. Bryce was attending Canton’s Ruth Eriksson Elementary at that time.
Detroit’s WXYZ 7 Action News (a local ABC affiliate) reported that on April 29, Bryce received a one-day suspension from school. He was suspended for hitting a white boy at his school with a ball during a dodgeball game.
However, no media outlet, school administration agency, or juvenile justice official in Canton, Michigan has proven any intentionality regarding Bryce’s alleged actions.
The white student was injured inadvertently during what was merely an innocent ball game among children on the school playground.
Unlike Lindley and her son, the alleged victim’s mother and her son have declined to have their names released to the public. The unnamed white school boy did sustain injuries during the dodgeball game.
His nose was bruised and he did sustain a black eye. A previously diagnosed medical condition also made the boy more susceptible to any kind of head trauma. However, none of his injuries were life-threatening.
An activist and educator named Jill Guerra Burger has created a petition on Change.org, which is directed to Maria Miller, Wayne County’s Assistant Prosecuting Attorney.
Burger’s petition is titled Dodgeball Is Not A Crime. It was created with intention of getting 1500 signatures but that number has grown to 2500. As of July 31 at 4:30 am PST, the petition had 1508 signatures.
“I am writing to demand that the charges against, ten-year-old, Bryce Lindley be dropped, [and] that a formal apology be made to his family,” Burger’s petition reads.
“The District Attorney’s office seek racial training support to create structural change in a system that is consistently criminalizing black youth. As a veteran elementary school teacher, I know that children get hurt on the playground all the time,” she also wrote.
In all fairness, the injured party’s parent(s) should have alerted the school about any pre-existing medical condition that would have increased the boy’s propensity for injury during physical activities in the gym or on the playground.
Please give this case the advocacy it needs by signing Burger’s Change.org petition here.