Transgender Student Involved in Hercules High Fight Speaks Out About Bullying
By Mario Sevilla
Mon Dec 2nd, 2013 8:22pm America/Los_Angeles
HERCULES (KRON and Wire Reports) — A fight at Hercules High School last month that involved a transgender student has prompted the West Contra Costa Unified School District board to hold a special meeting this evening.
The fight, which involved three female students and one 16-year-old transgender student, broke out at Hercules High School on Nov. 15.
The transgender student, Jewyles Gutierrez spoke to reporters at the board meeting Monday night. The 16-year-old student sought help from an assistant principle but says the harassment persisted.
“I was just sticking up for myself,” Gutierrez said. “I still feel unsafe.”
All four students were suspended after the incident, which, according to Hercules police, started when the transgender student hit a female student in the school’s courtyard.
That girl and two others then started fighting the transgender student.
“I just, kinda like, enough is enough,” Gutierrez said about the bullying. “You could stretch a rubber band so far and then it will just snap.”
Cellphone video footage shows the students pulling hair and pushing each other. Police said the students suffered only scratches in the fight.
Board of education member Charles Ramsey has said that the fight may have been sparked by ongoing harassment of the transgender student.
Ramsey said it is important to discuss worrisome occurrences that he said deteriorate the “school climate,” and noted past issues at other schools including the 2009 gang rape of a 16-year-old girl at Richmond High School.
“I think we really have to address why we have these problems,” he said.
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