The New York Daily News has obtained a video that shows a severe beating administered to a 15-year-old student by two of his school's employees. The recording, which the newspaper also shared with the child's mother, shows a much-larger male teacher and the school security dean Stephan Hudson, hold the boy by his arms and smash his head against a table in the area. The altercation ended when the student, identified as Kristoff John, was apprehended by school cops.
The mother, Diane John, was initially contacted by the school to let her know her son had been in a fight with a teacher. The officials claimed that the boy had started the altercation. They said that they were being generous in not taking the matter further. But the video clearly indicated that it wasn't Kristoff, but a George Westinghouse Career and Technical Education High School staff member who escalated the situation. According to John, as the result of the fight, her son was left with a sore back that limited his ability to walk for several days.
Describing the situation, Kristoff said that the when the teacher hit him, he was completely surprised and didn't have the time to understand what was happening.
[Kristoff is] now living with an aunt in his family's native Grenada.
He said he did nothing to provoke the altercation.
The teacher, Hudson, refused to talk to The News when confronted at the school's graduation and again at his Jersey City home.
The school's principal, Janine Kieran, also did not respond to several requests for comment.
According to the school district, Hudson, who makes nearly $100,000 a year, was disciplined for the incident, but declined to release the details. Hudson has been employed by the district since 1990.
Kristoff said that on the day of the fight, he was running late for school and was attempting to push open an entrance barrier when his security swipe card failed to activate it. Hudson, who is nearly double the boy's size, was attempting to stop the student from forcing the gate when he grabbed Kristoff's arm. When John attempted to free his arm, Hudson grabbed him again, and threw him to the floor with another staff joining in as other students looked on.
Kids who saw the fight said it was a one-sided beatdown.
"Mr. Hudson should've let him go," said Arleth Morfe, 17, a senior from Bayside who witnessed the altercation, adding, "It looked like Kristoff was having a panic attack."
That afternoon, it was Hudson who made the call to Kristoff's mother. He told her that Kristoff had attacked him but that he would graciously settle the matter quietly.
"He said they would shake hands and work it out, but I never knew the extent of it," said John, adding, "They didn't tell me anything else."