Mom says her black son with special needs was the victim of a hate crime committed by white classmates

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  • Hattie Williams
    American actress (1870-1942)
  • Quanell X
    Activist
A mom and a local activist say a teen boy was lured off campus at Houston’s Memorial High School and was jumped after receiving numerous threats via social media. (Photo: KTRK Houston)
A mom and a local activist say a teen boy was lured off campus at Houston’s Memorial High School and was jumped after receiving numerous threats via social media. (Photo: KTRK Houston)

A 17-year-old black student with special needs was the victim of a violent hate crime at the hands of five white students, who bullied and then physically assaulted him, his mother claims.

Hattie Williams, whose son attends Memorial High School in Houston, held a press conference outside the school on Tuesday alongside local activist and ally Quanell X, who also spoke on the family’s behalf. The pair explained that the teen, who is not being identified, started receiving racist messages on social media with threats of murder, according to local news outlet KPRC-TV.

“One student posted, ‘What’s good little n***** talk s*** get ganged,'” said Quanell X. “‘Once we kill him, we’ll throw him off a top.’ Look at this, they’re talking about killing this kid and what they would do with his body after they killed the kid.”

Williams claims that the harassment was followed by an argument at school, at which point the five boys allegedly lured her son off campus and jumped him, according to KTRK in Houston.

“I guess some words were exchanged, and it just got out of hand,” Williams said. “That’s when the altercation happened.”

The boy — who has a speech disorder, among other special needs — reportedly suffered a concussion from the fight.

Before the beating, the five boys also allegedly posted a SpongeBob SquarePants meme insinuating that the student would be the victim of a school shooting, as well as a graphic photo of a lynching.

“This is what they posted. A black man hanging from a tree,” Quanell X added. “This is all happening by white male students here at Memorial High School.”

Now Quanell X alleges that Memorial High School did not do enough to protect the teen — nor did it properly discipline his attackers, according to KPRC. Two were allegedly allowed to transfer to another school, while Williams’s son has been punished.

“They have separated [Williams’s] son, put him in ISS [in-school suspension] for the fight,” the activist said. “The only black kid that was jumped by five white kids, he’s in ISS. None of them are in ISS, not one. Where’s the message of zero tolerance being sent by Memorial High School to those kind of kids?”

Williams added that her son feels as if he’s being targeted by the school.

Yahoo Lifestyle has contacted Spring Branch Independent School District for comment. A district spokesperson told KTRK it “cannot comment on student discipline,” but did confirm that suspicious social media activity occurred and was taken seriously. In a statement to the channel, a spokesperson said:

“On Feb. 8, Memorial High School experienced a substantial disruption of the school environment due to social media posts which frightened many students and parents. The campus has and will continue to respond to the situation according to the requirements of state and federal law and the SBISD student code of conduct. The district reported the information received to the FBI and is collaborating with the FBI on this matter. The district must protect the confidentiality of all students and this situation is no different, so the district is not able to respond with facts to set the record straight about all the circumstances.”

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