Citadel Middle School. (Google Maps)

Boy, 13, arrested after alleged assault involving girl at B.C. middle school

Boy alleged to have used ‘inappropriate levels of force’ to injure the girl

A 13-year-old boy from Maple Ridge has been arrested after an alleged assault involving four boys and one girl at a Port Coquitlam middle school.

The incident happened on Jan. 10 at around 3:15 p.m. at Citadel Middle School, RCMP said in a news release Tuesday.

Investigators believe that a verbal confrontation between four boys and one girl escalated when the girl allegedly used a low level of physical force, police said. The 13-year-old allegedly responded with an “inappropriate level of force” that injured the girl, police said.

The boy was arrested and released on conditions to appear in court at a later date. Mounties said they have suggested one count of assault and one count of uttering threats to the B.C. Prosecution Service.

Police did not release the boy’s name because he is a minor and has not been formally charged.

Mounties also asked the public to avoid jumping to conclusions, especially online.

ALSO READ: B.C. teacher suspended for poking student in stomach, pulling another’s ponytail

“There are allegations appearing on social media that directly contradict the video evidence, witness statements, and established facts of this investigation,” said Cpl. Michael McLaughlin in the release.

“There has been a lot of anger directed to the school and police. We want to assure everyone that our first priority is to continually assess the risk and make sure that everyone involved is safe.”

More evidence needs to be gathered and evaluated, he added, and charges are possible against another youth involved.

On Monday, the alleged victim’s mother posted a detailed account of what happened. The post had been shared more than 2,500 times on Facebook as of Tuesday afternoon. Black Press Media is not publishing any names that could identify the people involved in the incident.

According to the mother, her 14-year-old daughter was at the school to pick up her younger sisters, ages 11 and 6, when a group of boys started following them, yelling profanities and sexual comments.

“The boys started walking right behind the girls and one boy walked side-by-side with my oldest daughter, and because of the slippery sidewalks, she slipped on some snow,” the post reads. “When she slipped, she bumped into his shoulder and then he called her a b****.”

She said her daughter and a 13-year-old boy got into a pushing match, which escalated, and that her daughter was punched in the face until she “blacked out.”

She said one of the other boys was filming the encounter, that her daughter told her that nearby parents didn’t intervene.

“My child’s face was covered in blood and swollen and I could not tell the extent of her injuries. It was the most terrifying moment of my life,” the mom said.

She said her 11-year-old daughter has been too scared to go back and claimed that the school has not suspended or disciplined the alleged attackers.

Black Press Media has contacted the mother for further comment. The RCMP said it could not confirm any of these details and that the investigation is ongoing.

READ MORE: ‘Weird, creepy, inappropriate’ short films ends in suspension for B.C. teacher

In a statement on Twitter, Port Coquitlam Mayor Brad West said he has reached out to the mother since learning of the incident, as well as RCMP and senior leadership with School District 43.

“We all have a responsibility to demonstrate respect and inclusion and be good role models for our children,” he said. “That’s what has made Port Coquitlam a diverse and welcoming community.”

School board chair Kerri Palmer Isaak told Black Press Media the board would not comment on an ongoing police investigation, nor individual students, but that it has been in contact with the school and RCMP.

“At the moment, the most emergent issue is with the families involved and helping the families in that school,” she said.

Ken Hoff, spokesperson for School District 43 said in an emailed statement that the district is aware of the incident and “takes this matter very seriously and is addressing the situation.” He said due to the ongoing police investigation, the school district would not be providing any further comment.

Black Press Media has reached out to the school principal for comment.

@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Sept. 27 to Oct. 3

World Farm Animals Day, Drink Beer Day and Virus Appreciation Day are all coming up this week

United Way celebrates seven decades of impact in Southern Interior

Organization sees issues with poverty, mental health and addictions, heighten during the pandemic

Okanagan rental housing market facing challenges due to COVID-19

The impact on real estate markets remains a wildcard

Two new COVID-19 cases reported in Interior Health

The total number of Interior Health cases since the beginning of the pandemic is now at 522

Sicamous mayor hopeful Highway 1 bridge replacement remains a priority after election

Construction of Bruhn Bridge replacement was initially to commence in 2020

B.C. records 98 more COVID-19 cases, most in Lower Mainland

One new senior home outbreak, Surrey Memorial outbreak over

Kelowna man injured during arrest sues RCMP

Supreme Court civil claim alleges Dustin Blondin was the victim of an ‘unprovoked attack’

PHOTOS: Ghost sighting in Vernon’s Polson Park

Mom and daughter photoshoot brings joy and laughter to bystanders

PHOTOS: 2nd calf in a month confirmed among Southern Resident killer whale pod

Center for Whale Research said they will eagerly await to observe the calf to evaluate its health

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Parks Canada not responsible for Mount Kobau blockade

Nearby residents have been vocal about plans to turn the area into a national park

97 distressed horses, cats and dogs seized from farm in Princeton

RCMP assisted as BC SPCA executed search warrant

$250K reward offered as investigation continues into Sea to Sky Gondola vandalism

Police also asking for specific footage of Sea to Sky highway around time of incident

Trudeau ‘disappointed’ by RCMP treatment of Sikh officers over mask issue

World Sikh Organization of Canada said taking Sikh officers off the front lines constitutes discrimination

Most Read