Knife threat incident concerns student's parents

A mother believes a North Texas school district is putting her 12-year-old daughter's safety at risk.

The mother wants to know why the district is allowing a boy who threatened her daughter with a steak knife back on campus.

The woman’s 12-year-old daughter is doing her schoolwork from home. She's afraid to go back to school, where she will cross paths with the boy who threatened to stab her in March.

“I was like, ‘I'm looking at the board; I'm trying to do my classwork,’” said the girl. “He said, ‘Turn around; stop looking at me.’ I told him, ‘I'm working on the board, trying to do my classwork.’ He pulled the knife out of his binder. He said, ‘Turn around or I'll stab you."

The girl says the knife had a handle and was really sharp.

“I was scared because I didn't know what he was going to do,” said the girl.

“I got a call from the [school resource officer] letting me know they had just taken a child off campus because he'd just pulled a seven-inch steak knife out on my daughter,” said Jessica Cruz, the girl’s mother. “I was floored."

The boy was expelled from school and the girl did not see him the rest of the year, which is why Monday was such a shock.

"I turned around,” said the girl. “He didn't see me, but I saw him. And I got scared, so I hid behind my friend."

Jessica says investigators told her the boy brought the knife to get back at a student who had shoved him in the hall, so she's terrified about what he might do to her daughter since there are two felony assault with a deadly weapon charges now pending in court against him.

Those charges stem from the knife incident.

“I'm afraid this child is going to hurt my daughter,” said Jessica.

Garland ISD has told the girl’s family that they've completed their investigation and made their decision to keep the boy at Coyle Middle School.

They could transfer their daughter, but they believe that is punishing the victim.

“How do you feel about going to school with him there?” FOX 4’s Lori Brown asked the girl.

“It's scary because you never know when you're going to see him next,” said the girl.

“You have a 12-year-old who’s in fear for her life. Does that concern the district?” Brown asked Garland ISD spokesperson Chris Moore.

“The district visited with the parents of the student who received the discipline,” said Moore. “We worked with those students, with those parents. We visited with the students who are at the school. It was all part of a typical investigation that we do. The findings that we have and that we worked with and that we issued on our discipline were based upon a very extensive and thorough investigation.”

“Is this child safe at school?” Brown said.

“Absolutely,” said Moore.

The girl and her parents hope so.

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