Students Rally Around Trans Student After Assault at Berlin High School
A trans teen in Berlin, Wisconsin was assaulted by bullies in the boy’s bathroom of Berlin Highschool, and students are rallying around the victim to seek justice for the assault on Thursday, November 4th. The victim, Lucas, alluded to previous instances where they had been bullied in the same bathroom, but he was too scared to come forward. The victims full name was not published, as he is a minor involved in the police investigation
According to Lucas, he was cornered in the boy’s bathroom by a group of fellow students, who demanded he pull his pants down and lift his shirt up while in a stall.
“They were surrounding the stall door and one was recording through the peek hole, and they saw my bottom half and after that I stood in the stall crying.” He told First Alert.
“I went to my classroom crying and asked my teacher to see the counselor.”
In the aftermath of the assault, he made a statement about how it affected him at school in the following weeks.
“I was uncomfortable, scared. I didn’t really want to walk around the hallways after that. I tried to ignore it, but it was hard. I finally spoke to my friends about it, and now everybody knows about it.”
A student at the high school, Amber Olstead, took action to organize a “silent, peaceful protest” in the form of a walkout outside of Berlin high school on Thursday, November 4th, in support of Lucas. At least 50 students participated in the event.
“We sat for a while and we were trying to get our questions answered, and we were kind of getting blown off and they were trying to get us inside, but we wanted this to be public, we wanted people to see us, hear us.” Olstead told First Alert.
According to another student, Junior Autumn Peterson there have been problems with these kinds of incidents in the past.
"Theres a big past of assault and homophobia in our school, and it just needs to come to an end."
Berlin Area School district superintendent, Carl Cartwright issued the following statement to NBC 26 about the incident:
“The Berlin Area School District is aware of a student walkout in response to allegations of a student assault at the high school. The Berlin Area School District is committed to the success of all students in a safe learning environment and we take such allegations seriously.
The school district is cooperating with local law enforcement who are investigating this situation. The district is also conducting its own investigation. Because of the ongoing investigations, the district is unable to provide additional details at this time.”
The Berlin Police force released a statement that no physical evidence that the assault had taken place had been acquired, but they urge anyone who has evidence of a video to call the number (920) 361-2121 to give any information.