A couple of Florida teens have been arrested for beating up a fellow student after the vicious assault was caught on camera. But the parents of the victim—who took his own life less than a week after the ordeal—are unsatisfied with their punishment and are seeking additional charges, according to reports.
Dana McGlone, of Milton, has called for the kids seen in the video allegedly assaulting her son Joey McGlone, 16, in the bed of a pickup truck on September 7 to be charged with felonies rather than first-degree misdemeanor battery, according to WEAR-TV, ABC’s local affiliate in northwest Florida.
Two boys can be viewed in the video punching and kicking another—identified as Joey—as he writhes in the fetal position, according to WEAR-TV.
"When he jumped in the back of the truck, he reached and got a pipe, they were coming at him," Mcglone said, as quoted by WEAR-TV. "Go, go, go he tells the guy in the truck, and the truck won't go, it stalls… So he grabs the pipe, and they snatch his arms and legs out from under him, stand on his arms and start beating and kicking him."
She added that the two unidentified teens in the video, who were arrested Tuesday, then proceeded to pick on her son at school the following day at the Santa Rosa Adult School.
"After the incident, at school on Tuesday, they bullied him again," Mcglone said, according to WEAR-TV. "On Wednesday, he talked me into letting him stay home, and Thursday he's dead. Is that what they wanted? Because that's what they got."
Both Dana McGlone and Ron Hall, Joey’s stepfather, have aired disappointment with what they perceive as far too lenient charges.
“Battery?” McGlone asked, as quoted by WEAR-TV. “If you hit somebody with a newspaper hard, that’s battery.”
Hall, meanwhile, called the charges “a slap on the wrist.”
“That was vicious, that wasn’t a misdemeanor assault,” he told the Pensacola News Journal.
But Milton Police Chief Tony Tindell maintained that the charges levied against the two alleged assailants are in line with that they’re accused of doing.
“To be a felony, they would have had to use a deadly weapon, cause great bodily harm or permanent disfigurement,” Tindell said, according to WEAR-TV.
Tindell said police are still investigating the event despite having made two arrests already, the News Journal reports. But even though the victim’s family has claimed that his suicide was directly linked to the September 7 fight, Tindell confirmed that his office only has the authority to look into the battery charges and not Joey McGlone’s suicide.
Dana McGlone told WEAR-TV she heard a rumor that one of the teens caught on tape beating her son has an uncle at the local police department.
Tindell, however, denied any officer connections.
"I am unaware of any of our officers or civilian employees related to anyone who's in that video," Tindell said, according to WEAR-TV.
On Facebook, the hashtag #JusticeForJoeyMcGlone has attracted support in Florida and beyond.
Dana McGlone, meanwhile, has filled her personal page with tributes to her late son as well as heartfelt statements against bullying.
“Bullying cost lives , therefore has to stop.. I am very aware He won't ever answer when I call for him again, I know his smile won't ever brighen (sic) the room. Yet somehow his Voice must cry out for another child .. There are several Joey's at school today, scared not certain what the day will bring. I couldn't save my child, So I won't his Voice to help you and your child,” she wrote on Friday morning.
[Photo Credit: Facebook]