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Thursday, October 27, 2011

What Does It Take to Get Expelled From Union-Scioto High School?

Posted by on Thu, Oct 27, 2011 at 10:18 AM

We don't know. We do know what will get you a three-day suspension from the Chillicothe, Ohio, high school: beating the shit out of an openly gay kid. Watch this video:

Equality Ohio:

This week, a 15-year-old teenager was severely beaten in his high school class room for being gay. The attack occurred at Union-Scioto High School in Chillicothe, Ohio, and was caught on camera as fellow class members watched one teen wait for the victim to enter the room, push him to the ground and continually punch him in the face. Two days prior to the attack, the perpetrator harassed the victim via Facebook regarding his sexual orientation. The victim has suffered a possible concussion and dental damage. The attacker was suspended from school for just three days. Union-Scioto has no policy in place that specifically protects students from being bullied or attacked based on sexual orientation or gender identity. The Union-Scioto Local School District does have a policy that prohibits harassment based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, among others, but it does not specifically protect against harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity.

A policy forbidding harassment based on sexual orientation or gender identity won't prevent all incidents of bullying or assault. But it would send a message. You know what else sends a message? Arresting someone for felony assault, indicting someone for felony assault, and, if someone is found guilty of felony assault, sending someone to prison for felony assault. If the bully in who assaulted the gay kid in this video had done the exact same thing to a little old lady in shopping mall or a stranger at a bus stop he would've been arrested and charged with a crime. If he had done the same thing to a teacher at Union-Scioto High School he would've been arrested and expelled. Watch the video again. That kid who beat up a fellow student was suspended for three days and he wasn't arrested? The administrators at Union-Scioto High School and the police in Chillicothe are sending a message to every bully and bigot in town: felony assault isn't felony assault if you're assaulting the gay kid.

"He kept hitting, and nobody did anything."

Do something.

Union-Scioto Local Schools District Administration:
Superintendent: Dwight Garrett
High School Principal: James Osborne
Unioto High School Asst. Principal: Wilma Gillott

If they shut off their email:

Administration Office
1565 Egypt Pike
Chillicothe, Ohio 45601

Unioto High School
14193 Pleasant Valley Road
Chillicothe, Ohio 45601

And contact the police:

Chief Roger Moore
28 North Paint Street
Chillicothe, Ohio 45601
Phone: (740) 773-1191

The Chillicothe Police Department would like to remind citizens that they can email anonymous complaints of drug activity, or any illegal activity, to These complaints will be reviewed and investigated by detectives of the Chillicothe Police Department.

UPDATE: Says Massgroovy:



Comments (109) RSS

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SpecialBrew 1
The attacked teen & family should definitely press charges legally.

If the High School's policy is only 3-day suspension for physical assault (however hard) than that's the way it works really....they can't expell him because the victim was gay. That said, if there is a policy of expulsion for severity of the beating/assault they should clearly be envoking that....
Posted by SpecialBrew on October 27, 2011 at 10:23 AM · Report this
With all due respect to the anti-bigotry angle, what about the more general matter of you know, ASSAULT & BATTERY?

This is a CRIMINAL act no matter who it's committed against. Why not elevate it to that level and insist that the police deal with it? If bullies start getting arrested and prosecuted for felony assault maybe we'll see a lot less school violence.
Posted by WFM on October 27, 2011 at 10:32 AM · Report this
Pressing charges makes the most sense to me as well. Even if the bully were expelled I would still press charges. Students should have as many rights as adults do, if they were both adults the bully would be in jail that day.
Posted by lookitsaustin on October 27, 2011 at 10:32 AM · Report this
seandr 4
Damn. Somebody needs to step up and beat the living shit out that bully. Break his arm, feed him his teeth, and pound his face until he's crying bloody snot bubbles out of his nose.

Sorry, I know that's horrible and wrong, but it's really hard for me to watch someone get away with an unprovoked, premeditated ambush like that. Just once I'd like to see the video where the asshole loses.
Posted by seandr on October 27, 2011 at 10:34 AM · Report this
Posted by mirthdefect on October 27, 2011 at 10:44 AM · Report this
OK, maybe Dan has a point about school yard bullies needing to be locked up.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on October 27, 2011 at 10:47 AM · Report this
What @2 said.

From my own experience and what I've been able to read, assault in the school environment is somehow held to a different standard than any other assault. The kind of beating that would get you arrested, no matter the sexual orientation of the victim, on the street somehow becomes a matter of a three day suspension because it happened at school. Fuck expulsion alone. The perpetrator is guilty of a severe assault and should be prosecuted as such, and jailed for it. If teachers were in the area and did nothing (I have seen it and worse, experienced it) they should be charged with negligence and at the very least fired.
Posted by Lynx on October 27, 2011 at 10:50 AM · Report this

In addition to pressing criminal charges, the victim should sue for monetary damages in civil court. Let the bullying asshole pay to put the gay kid he beat up thru college. There you have the best revenge.
Posted by Robby on October 27, 2011 at 11:01 AM · Report this
JF 9
@4 I hate my feeling of blood lust, but I'm not going to ignore it either. I'd like to see his shit head parents catch an ass whooping as well.
Posted by JF on October 27, 2011 at 11:05 AM · Report this
Sam Machkovech 10
I don't endorse bullying at school, having gotten my fair share of shoves, punches and "hey faggot" in high school (to clarify: I wasn't gay, so my situation didn't compare). But are we really endorsing throwing the stupid, incomplete mind of a 15-year-old into prison?

This kid obviously needs a lesson taught, and a 3-day suspension sends the wrong message--now, now, don't you do that again, mister!--but for Dan to demand the pitchforks seems like a lot of fire-on-fire here. I think there are two points worth making.

1) The bully here is on the track to commit more such hate crimes unless some severe intervention comes through. Why not a ridiculous amount of community service, perhaps at a LGBT center or something similarly open-minded, to take the kid out of his safe zone of Facebook and high school and see the other side of his hate? You throw his teenage peanut brain in prison, and you'll harden the source of his hate.

2) The rest of the students are on the track to ALLOW more such hate crimes unless some severe intervention comes through. Letters and calls to the school district should push for the entire student body to stand accountable for what happened. Bullying only gets worse through the funnel of social networking, and schools aren't accounting for it in the least. Start a regular assembly to deal with this shit.

Dan, please take some responsibility for talking about how schools and parents should handle hateful kids.
Posted by Sam Machkovech on October 27, 2011 at 11:06 AM · Report this
If the bully had been carrying/selling drugs or committing any other such crime, even of a non violent nature, he would have been arrested and expelled.
Posted by ladybot on October 27, 2011 at 11:07 AM · Report this
Sir Vic 12
Sounds like there are multiple felonies here. There's also the charge of "Lying in Wait" to commit a crime. It's primarily a charge to send non-whites to jail, but it should certainly apply in this instance.

And I totally agree with @4. It's a shame that there is no one in that school with any guts. That dude isn't all that big or tough. Someone could really make a name for himself there.
Posted by Sir Vic on October 27, 2011 at 11:08 AM · Report this
If you want to, here's the e-mail of the county prosecutor. Be polite, but let him know that the perpetrator not only set up a recording of the assault but then apparently put it online. Can there be an easier case to prosecute?

Ross County Prosecutor:
Posted by BornAgainInBellevue on October 27, 2011 at 11:20 AM · Report this
Posted by masgroovy on October 27, 2011 at 11:21 AM · Report this
Chillicothe, Ohio is in OH-18 with Bob Gibbs (R) as their Representative. Gibbs supports the CC survey question on banning same-sex marriage.
Posted by Drew2u on October 27, 2011 at 11:22 AM · Report this
@10: He dealt him a possible concussion and a broken tooth. If it had happened on a downtown street corner instead of in a classroom, there would be no question about pressing charges for assault and battery, nor about lying-in-wait or hate crime enhancements.

The reason why schoolyard violence persists is because it is treated as a lesser offense than the exact same behavior when done elsewhere. It's high time we put that attitude to rest, and treat the perpetrators as the violent offenders that they are.

It's also high time that we develop a societal narrative that to initiate violence is to be publicly marked as the worst sort of loser. We need to stop glorifying thug culture.
Posted by avast2006 on October 27, 2011 at 11:32 AM · Report this
porkfish66 17
The very to item on the districts web page:


Students of the Union-Scioto Local School District will achieve and succeed in a safe and drug free environment.

So much for safe.
Posted by porkfish66 on October 27, 2011 at 11:34 AM · Report this
Kevin_BGFH 18
@10 - He beat up a defenseless kid to the point where the kid has a possible concussion as well as dental damage. He needs to be arrested. Period. That kind of assault is criminal and a three day suspension where he very well may be staying home to watch TV and play video games is intolerable.

I do not think a 15 year old should be tried as an adult and then thrown into an adult prison. But that doesn't mean he should get off free. He should be arrested, tried as a juvenile, and face the same penalties he'd face if he assaulted someone at a bus stop.

And the poor victims' family, in addition for suing for damages, should demand a restraining order.
Posted by Kevin_BGFH on October 27, 2011 at 11:34 AM · Report this
I am baffled by the idea that he hasn't been arrested. Is it not possible for the parents, or the victim himself, to press charges and make that happen?
Posted by avast2006 on October 27, 2011 at 11:39 AM · Report this
Gern Blanston 20
If a girl in Snohomish County can be charged with attempted murder for stabbing two of her classmates, surely this bully can be charged with assault and expelled for beating this poor kid senseless.
Posted by Gern Blanston on October 27, 2011 at 11:42 AM · Report this
BEG 21
OMG!! Press charges, against the kids for the assault and battery, AND AGAINST THE SCHOOL FOR FAILURE TO PROTECT STUDENTS AND FOR AIDING AND ABETTING ASSAULT AND BATTERY by failing to report the crime themselves!

Christ on a crutch! I don't *believe* this!
Posted by BEG!/browneyedgirl65 on October 27, 2011 at 11:44 AM · Report this
debug 22
If the victim was a girl or if the perpetrator was a gang member, more people would be cheering on trying him as an adult. This kid needs jail time. You can feel sorry that he was brought up wrong, but that doesn't excuse his behavior or consequences.

I could be misinformed but if this happened to my kid I'd have called the police first, not talked to the school. I'd also sue the school for failing to provide a safe environment and (if they could be identified) anybody even slightly egging on the fight in the video.
Posted by debug on October 27, 2011 at 11:46 AM · Report this
I sent the following message to all of the contacts Dan lists in his post, and I encourage everyone who has time to post a comment to SLOG to channel that energy and write to the school administration and police as well:

The Union-Scioto student who was caught ON VIDEO (as in, there is no question of debating circumstances or identity) repeatedly assaulting a fellow, 15 year-old student this week, should be charged with assault. The three-day suspension he received sends a message of tolerance of criminal behavior to every other student in the district, and does nothing to protect the attacker's fellow students from he or his peers repeating this behavior.

It has become clear that the victim's sexual orientation - he is openly gay - may well have influenced the decision to impose such a light penalty on the attacker. The attacker had previously harassed the victim on Facebook (so, again, ON THE RECORD) regarding his orientation, so we do know it was the motivation. Ask yourself: if the victim had been a black student and the attacker an open racist, would the punishment have differed? If so, then shame on the school administration, as NO child - and a 15 year old is a child - should have to live in fear of physical harm being done to him at school.

Apart from the morality of the situation (i.e, it is inherently wrong to not impose consequences on the attacker at level with the crime committed) - technically speaking, beating up anyone is without doubt a criminal activity, and should be treated as such.

I assume some of you may well be parents, as I am. Ask yourselves: what if your child had been assaulted? Would you even for a second hesitate in bringing to bear the full power of the law? The administration is charged with providing a secure environment in which children can receive an education, without fear. The police are charged with enforcing the law in their communities. DO YOUR JOBS.
Posted by StrangerFan on October 27, 2011 at 12:00 PM · Report this
ugh-- I have been to Chillicoothe, OH on work-- it seriously is deliverance country
Posted by freshnycman on October 27, 2011 at 12:31 PM · Report this
Keekee 25
oKay, called the school admin, principal & vice-principal and only got voice mail. The admin office had a secretary that quickly switched me to voice mail once she knew what I wanted to talk about. Left 'em a polite earfull, and said I would continue to call until I got a live person.

Thanx for the heads-up Dan.
Posted by Keekee on October 27, 2011 at 12:31 PM · Report this
Just sent an e-mail to the school. Didn't bounce, so the e-mail is on.

I'm with BEG (@21) above, plus Kevin's (@18) reaction to Mr Machkovech (@10)'s comment, i.e.: by all means try the bully, but as a juvenile, not as an adult. Plus do sue the school for not reporting the crime. Shouldn't someone send an e-mail to the parents suggesting this?

Could it be that the legal costs (hiring a lawyer, etc.) are beyond the victim's familiy's means?
Posted by ankylosaur on October 27, 2011 at 12:39 PM · Report this
very bad homo 27
Arrest this kid, AND his shit parents for raising such a monster.
Posted by very bad homo on October 27, 2011 at 12:45 PM · Report this
Why the hell did the other kids just sit there?
Posted by Drusilla on October 27, 2011 at 12:51 PM · Report this
@26 I agree, the perpetrator is a child and should be treated as such, but the courts shouldn't give him a pass just because the incident happened at school.
Posted by Ken Mehlman on October 27, 2011 at 12:52 PM · Report this
Yeah that kid is a rage filled beast. Look at him pacing like a caged bear while waiting for his victim. Jail him.

As for the victim- god I can only imagine how hard it is going to be to walk back in to school, bruises fading to green and yellow, constantly looking over his shoulder, and having to try to LEARN. My heart breaks for him.
Posted by DanFan503 on October 27, 2011 at 12:53 PM · Report this
I'm confused- if the mom is already pursuing charges through the Prosecutor's office, what are we supposed to call and tell the Prosecutor's office? I agree that calling the school to expel the student makes sense, but I am confused as what difference our our calls make to the Prosecutor or sheriff. Seems like flooding them with calls just takes away resources and time they could use to spend actually working on the case. It'd be one thing if they were ignoring it or dropping charges, but nothing in this news report seems to indicate that... And flooding their Crime Tip line with messages about an assault that was on the TV news? If the police aren't called to the scene, they're not at fault for not arresting someone.
Posted by pdx2dc on October 27, 2011 at 1:09 PM · Report this
Vince 32
Sue, sue, sue...the school, district and parents!
Posted by Vince on October 27, 2011 at 1:29 PM · Report this
Cascadian 33
This needs to be prosecuted.

That said, in the Dark Ages when I was in high school (84-88) people got into vicious fights all the time, some of them one-sided attacks. The general attitude was that before the age of 18, you would not be prosecuted for fighting, but you would be expelled for a few days, or a whole term for a repeat offense. The climate was one of complete criminal impunity. I'm glad that's not always the case these days, but this case fits right in with that way of thinking.

I am sympathetic with the idea that teenagers are not fully mature humans and should not be punished as adults in most cases. But that doesn't mean not even assigning criminal responsibility in cases of assault. This should be prosecuted, and the perp's age should be a relevant consideration during sentencing.
Posted by Cascadian on October 27, 2011 at 1:30 PM · Report this
Vince 34
Then get a restraining order!
Posted by Vince on October 27, 2011 at 1:32 PM · Report this
Kind of a baffling story. Apparently having no policy against anti-gay bullying means you also have no policy against assault? The issue isn't specifically that the show needs an anti-gay bullying policy but that beating up a gay kid is just as much a criminal act as beating up a black kid, beating up a Jewish kid, or, for that matter, beating up a straight, white, Christian kid.

I think we need a new acronym for this all-too-common occurrence:

STMFTJA: Send the motherfucker to jail already!
Posted by Daniel_NY on October 27, 2011 at 1:38 PM · Report this
Here's hoping the victim lies in wait with a baseball bat and sends this asshole to the emergency room. I don't care that he's just a kid. Break some fucking bones.
Posted by catsnbanjos on October 27, 2011 at 1:43 PM · Report this
kim in portland 37

I'm guessing we want the entire city and school district to know that they have attracted international attention, in hopes that this won't be brushed aside. Most of us have met our share of "I feel just terrible. I can't help but feel if that boy hadn't been flaunting his sexuality then this tragedy would not have happened" individuals, and unfortunately there are likely some if not many in his community who think that he shares the blame or is really the responsible one. One way to help prevent this young man and his family from feeling alone is to have them "see" support and to know that he's not responsible for the evil and abusive attack. Just my $0.02 from working with DV abuse victims and dealing with the schools when our children were bullied.
Posted by kim in portland on October 27, 2011 at 1:50 PM · Report this

It gets the prosecutor on it now. If this happened on a city street, the suspect would have spent a brief time locked up until he can raise bail and he would have been charged already.

Simply ask the county prosecutor if it their policy to delay charges in all cases where identity is not in question and there is video evidence if a crime. Or is it just this one?
Posted by BornAgainInBellevue on October 27, 2011 at 2:43 PM · Report this

*is totally horrified*
Posted by MichelleZB on October 27, 2011 at 2:47 PM · Report this
undead ayn rand 40
@17: "Students of the Union-Scioto Local School District will achieve and succeed in a safe and drug free environment.

So much for safe."

They will now awkwardly clarify what they kids are safe FROM.
Posted by undead ayn rand on October 27, 2011 at 2:53 PM · Report this
Sent emails. This is horrible. Beyond words.
Posted by yetisaurus on October 27, 2011 at 3:11 PM · Report this
I need updates damn it! Is the prosecutor actually persuing charges? Shouldn't there be some way we can check on charges filed through available public records?
On another note, I wish the assailant becomes aware of how many people nationwide would like to rip his head off over this.
Posted by DanFan503 on October 27, 2011 at 3:41 PM · Report this
Kallisti 43
Posted by Kallisti on October 27, 2011 at 4:01 PM · Report this
I am embarrassed to say I am a graduate of this school. I would also like to point out that there is a maximum security prison across the street. The attacker doos not have to look far to get a glimps of his future. Shame on him and everyone in that room.
Posted by Lstiving on October 27, 2011 at 4:14 PM · Report this
I am embarrassed to say I am a graduate of this school. Yes, Chillicothe is a rural town and certainly not a liberal community. Unfortunately this student's hatred is most likely perpetuated at home. I would also like to point out that there is a maximum security prison across the street from UHS (adds to the charm)
The attacker does not have to look far to get a glimps of his future should he continue on this path. Shame on him and everyone in that room.
I hope the victim is able to see the world is bigger than this little town.
Posted by Lstiving on October 27, 2011 at 4:38 PM · Report this
thank you this blog for listing email. I emailed them as well.

I am, like you guys, outraged and even more annoyed OTHER STUDENTS seat and stand around watching this. THOSE students should also be press charges and suspended too!!!!!

Posted by angryasian on October 27, 2011 at 5:05 PM · Report this
The school district's report bullying form:…

And a picture of the superintendent:
Posted by shameonthem on October 27, 2011 at 7:19 PM · Report this
White pages listing for the superintendent:…

For the assistant principal:…

Posted by shameonthem on October 27, 2011 at 7:58 PM · Report this
@4--My older brother, who was 6-1, 185#, and covered in body hair in the 8th grade, did that once--i.e., he interrupted an assault at school and beat up the bully.

Yeah yeah yeah it's wrong, but whatever. It was beyond satisfying for everyone except the bully, and it ushered in a Pax Romana for the next two years he attended that school.

I wish that being physically precocious and having a sense of vigilante justice went together more often.
Posted by milkshake on October 27, 2011 at 9:09 PM · Report this
Emailed - School email addresses are still up.
Posted by misskriss on October 27, 2011 at 10:04 PM · Report this
Emailed - School email addresses still up.
Posted by misskriss on October 27, 2011 at 10:10 PM · Report this
This is beyond appalling. What leaves me most astonished is how at least one kid - the one with the camera at the ready - was in on it. Conspiracy (requires 2+ (certainly the case here)) to commit an assault. If this is not a hate crime and is "simply" an outrageous case of assault/battery, the bully and his accomplice should absolutely be brought to justice (juvenile court, fine). And all the kids in the room who did nothing (and I'd never fault anyone from not involving themselves in the confrontation but not calling 9-1-1 or going for a teacher is shameful) need to take a long look in the mirror and ask what they might hope for if they are ever attacked in full view of a room of bystanders.
Posted by From the South (as in CA) on October 27, 2011 at 11:13 PM · Report this
Does anyone know how to increase the pressure on the school and school district to do the right thing? I can see them trying to stonewall, biding their time so the issue goes away. Chillicothe only has 22,000 people and it is over an hour to the nearest large city. As of early Friday morning, the story was on 3 sites: Daily What, Towelroad and this one. How else to encourage the maximum amount of people to call and e-mail the school and the district superintendent? Who has ideas to make this viral?
Posted by tjtsixty3 on October 28, 2011 at 3:21 AM · Report this
I am from the South and grew up with rednecks, but the only time I ever felt really scared by them was once on a trip through southern Ohio. Seriously, that place is inbred hillbillies.
Posted by Mr. Ed on October 28, 2011 at 6:06 AM · Report this
geoz 55
To answer the question as to whether this 15 year old goes to jail or not. My answer is yes. I think this is exactly why we have law enforcment. Violence is unacceptable. Where I work, at a college, we suspend a student until a hearing can take place, then most likely he would be suspsended for the term. But we also bring in the police. Assault is a assault, and 15 or any age doesn't excuse it. We suspended a student for one punch. This kind of aggression is intolerable and interupts the safe space a person needs to actually learn.
Posted by geoz on October 28, 2011 at 6:59 AM · Report this
I have started a petition on to ask the Union-Scioto school board to address the problems in their school system, to protect LGBTQ and all students from harassment, bullying, and outright violence.

Please ask people to sign and support the poor student attacked in such a vicious way.…

Thank you
Posted by Sethboy on October 28, 2011 at 8:04 AM · Report this
I have started a petition on to ask the Union-Scioto school board to address the problems in their school system, to protect LGBTQ and all students from harassment, bullying, and outright violence.

Please ask people to sign and support the poor student attacked in such a vicious way.…

Thank you
Posted by Sethboy on October 28, 2011 at 8:09 AM · Report this
John Horstman 58
Well, he doesn't exactly need to be expelled if he's in jail for five years for assault...

That said, he probably SHOULD be expelled, at the very least.

Also, I bet smoking a joint in school would get you expelled.
Posted by John Horstman on October 28, 2011 at 8:36 AM · Report this
@4: I suspect his Dad already did, and that's what made him a bully. However, yes, schools and the law should treat this the same way they'd treat an attack on anyone else.
Posted by James Hutchings on October 28, 2011 at 8:37 AM · Report this
To all of you that think that this POS should have the shit kicked out of him, then feel bad that you thought that, don't. There is nothing wrong with wanting a severe beating handed out to that fuck. Where is that kids dad (the poor kid that took the beating). If anyone did that to my son (and I not just being a macho idiot here) I would fuck them up so bad, they would drinking their dinner thru a straw for the rest of their life. We have to step up to this. How come the people who think this kind of shit is OK get away with it? And we just stand there? Malcolm X said it best with these two quotes:
"Be peaceful, be courteous, obey the law, respect everyone; but if someone puts his hand on you, send him to the cemetery."
"I don't even call it violence when it's in self defense; I call it intelligence."
Posted by Fire to fight Fire on October 28, 2011 at 9:02 AM · Report this
"The attacker was suspended from school for just three days. Union-Scioto has no policy in place that specifically protects students from being bullied or attacked based on sexual orientation or gender identity."

What difference should it make WHY one student beat another? Is it brain surgery to have a simple policy that protects students from attack?

Does this mean that if the boy said "I attacked him because his sweatshirt was green," the school wouldn't be able to do anything about it until they created a "policy" preventing attacking students because they are wearing green sweatshirts?"

THAT is a ridiculous excuse, which exposes something reprehensible about this school's tolerance of violence.

The SCHOOL needs to be mandated to provide anti-bullying training. Teachers/employees first, then students.
Posted by Citizen on October 28, 2011 at 12:10 PM · Report this
Sue the violent little bigot and then sue the school district for not protecting the little gay guy. AFTER they arrest the bigot for assault and battery.

Posted by Barry Hinkson on October 28, 2011 at 12:47 PM · Report this
The sad thing is that people are mistaking Unioto High School for my school, Chillicothe High School, and our school officials and administrators are getting hundreds of death threats and hate mail from all over the world each day. Unioto High School is a county school that isn't even in Chillicothe city limits. Chillicothe High School is the only high school in all of Ross County with an active Gay Straight Alliance and a full required day of diversity training for all juniors at the local community college.

People always want to blame us because were the local city school. Thank you so much for posting this. It's time for Unioto to own up to what happened.
Posted by angry student on October 28, 2011 at 2:33 PM · Report this
@60: I understand those sentiments and would expect to feel similarly if one of my kids were beaten in this way. But, with all due respect, vigilantism is a slippery sloap. What if the kid you beat down has a dad or uncle or sister or mother who has access to guns and decides to kill you? Not far-fetched, really, when you think that this kid has such pent-up rage that he'd plan this attack. Gotta figure he gets it from some where. Pressure on those who can - legally - impose the sanctions is the way to go. And if they are unable or unwilling to do so, putting pressure on those who can change that is the next step.
Posted by From the South (as in CA) on October 28, 2011 at 2:39 PM · Report this
scary tyler moore 65
got a reply from the county prosecutor: he is opening a full scale criminal investigation into this immediately. emailing works! get to it, flying monkeys!! put this on your facebook page and blog!!!
Posted by scary tyler moore on October 28, 2011 at 3:09 PM · Report this
scary tyler moore 66
Here's the proof:

"I agree with virtually everything you have noted in your email. I have ordered an in-depth criminal investigation into this entire matter. You may rest assured that once the investigation is complete, the offender will be prosecuted accordingly."

Matthew S. Schmidt
Ross County Prosecuting Attorney

Posted by scary tyler moore on October 28, 2011 at 3:12 PM · Report this
scary tyler moore 67
by the way, haven't heard a thing from the school district.
Posted by scary tyler moore on October 28, 2011 at 3:47 PM · Report this
I, like many others, was shocked to hear the news coming out of Chillicothe, OH of a student being beaten by another student. I was brought to tears watching the video of the attack as well as the allegations of a hate crime. The news of this coming to me a little more than a week after my traveling to Unioto and speaking with both the middle and high school on the topic of internet safety with a strong focus on bullying both online and in the real world. Once I heard the news of what had happened I immediately focused on what media and information I could find on the incident which is something that others seems to neglect doing.

I will start this by saying that I, in no way, condone the actions of the student who attacked this boy. I will say that I am slightly appalled by the reaction of the internet world and those who claim to want to “right the wrongs”.

I am ashamed of the blogging, tweeting and all around internet community for jumping the gun before getting any of their facts straight. Yes, the attacker was given a 3 day suspension but this was before any knowledge of the video or alleged hate crime had come to light. Once the school had knowledge of this they elected to modify the punishment accordingly (details of this “enhanced” punishment are not given). This seems to be information being left out by the blogging community that is so quick to place blame on the school for not reacting accordingly.

The attacked in the video is said to have used “hate language” on Facebook regarding his victim’s sexuality, posted a photo and captioning it with ‘The definition of faggot’. This is certainly enough to warrant the idea of the attack being more than just a schoolyard scuffle. The video itself leads the idea of pre-meditation, showing the attacker waiting for the victim to arrive to class and someone clearly having the tape already rolling. However, again, the video was not made know to the school until after it surfaced on Facebook, well after a punishment had been handed out.

The attack isn’t the only thing that is shown and in this I am right alongside most in my shock. For the duration of the attack, no one did a thing. Not too long ago, during his town hall at Rutgers University, Anderson Cooper revealed the statistic that in 77% of bullying incidents, bystanders stood by an did nothing. In this event bystanders moved out of the way, they video-taped, they watched- they did nothing. I am saddened by this beyond any measure. I wanted to believe that maybe Anderson Cooper had it wrong, sadly, with this video, he is shown to be right without a doubt.

Having both heard what I have to say on the topic and witnessing the effects of just standing by first hand, I do not doubt that the overall student community of Unioto has learned an important lesson. It is unfortunate that, like many lessons, it comes too late for the victim of this attack. Let it be a lesson to everyone that silence is not the way to go. If someone had stood up and spoke out then perhaps this attack wouldn’t have been so brutal. Hindsight is 20/20.

Looking forward to have to now take our own reactions into consideration and what effect they are having on the students, the school and the community. Many sites are calling for their readers to contact the school and administrators by e-mail and standard mail and express their outrage. I find it funny that these same people are shocked when the school is forced to move into the “no comment” zone. Is this call to action not yet another form of bullying?

Another important piece of advice I give to students is not to retaliate- not to become a bully themselves. People have begun to unfairly retaliate against the school who, as far as I’m concerned (as an outside observer), is doing the best they can to investigate and respond to this incident.

By posting the name, addresses and e-mail addresses of the administration these people who are calling for action are, in essence, becoming bullies themselves and encouraging others to do the same. Yes, we should be outraged that attacks like these are taking place over a year after the world came together and said “It Gets Better” to the students who are suffering the abuse and torment of bullies. By all means scream out. But we have no right to read a few articles and then assume that we know everything that is going on and everything that is being done about this incident. Let’s give these people all a chance to do their jobs and bring justice for this boy.

My heart goes out to this boy and his family and there hasn’t been a moment today, from the time I first heard about the incident this morning when I woke up until now, that I haven’t had them and the entire Unioto community in my thoughts. I do hope that things can get better and important lessons are learned by everyone from students to teachers to educators. Rather than raising arms lets join together to make a difference in a positive way that doesn’t bring further harm to a community that is already dealing with enough.

-Josh Gunderson
Educational Speaker
Posted by Josh Gunderson on October 28, 2011 at 7:55 PM · Report this
My response to this entry was too long but can be found on my blog at
Posted by Josh Gunderson on October 28, 2011 at 8:01 PM · Report this
To those of you who think this school is just awful, it's not! yes, there was an unfortunate incident where a boy was attacked because of his sexuality. I am a graduate of the high school and I must say that this came as a complete shock. The teachers there do undergo training that discusses bullying and incidents (such as fights) are usually broken up very quickly and the attacker is normally harshly punished.

When the attacker in this instance was suspended, the administration was unaware of the video and the severity of the attack. He has recently been given a much harsher suspension and has been recommended for expulsion.

Don't make judgments about the school's policies unless you get your facts strait!
Posted by mcdoogles2011 on October 28, 2011 at 10:08 PM · Report this
KittenKoder 71
@70 Schools change, things now are likely very different from when you were there.
Posted by KittenKoder on October 28, 2011 at 10:57 PM · Report this
It's so sad to see closet cases take out their frustrations on happy, openly gay people. Reminds me of the gay bashing episode of QueerAsFolk. I sure hope he gets jail time instead of community service.
Posted by akilah on October 29, 2011 at 9:03 AM · Report this
amyl 73
@63- Kudos to your school for all the good work they've done to offer support to LGBTQ students. I'm sorry folks are mixing up your school with Unioto High School, total bummer.

@70- Perhaps Unioto would like to issue a press release with all the facts?
Posted by amyl on October 29, 2011 at 10:16 AM · Report this
@ 71

I graduated last school year (2010-2011)
Posted by mcdoogles2011 on October 29, 2011 at 11:36 AM · Report this
@73, the school is probably bound by privacy laws from releasing that kind of information.
Posted by clashfan on October 29, 2011 at 8:44 PM · Report this
@70: "When the attacker in this instance was suspended, the administration was unaware of the video and the severity of the attack"


You mean you can't know the severity of an attack when the victim is covered in blood and has several broken teeth? And the offender's knuckles are similarly battered without any other marks on him? This isn't a "he pushed me" kind of assault. This is a "oh, he kicked the shit out of that faggot kid" kind of assault. And the administration's response is pretty obvious as to how they feel about that.
Posted by gromm on October 29, 2011 at 10:35 PM · Report this
This is so wrong. As an educator, I have a zero tolerance policy in my classroom for bigotry. How could this have taken place in a classroom? Where was the teacher?? How can the administration do nothing? Who is standing by the student here? School needs to be a safe place for students. The offending student should have been expelled. This is unbelievable and incredibly sad on behalf of the administration of this school, shame on you!!
Posted by sherman885 on October 30, 2011 at 2:44 PM · Report this
I am a teacher and we would never tolerate anything like that in our schools. Where was the teacher? Why were students left alone in a classroom that is negligence! We suspend any student who video tapes even if it isn't posted on the internet if caught. Restorative Justice needs to happen-- how did the other students in the room feel? The parents of the bully needs to be brought into the picture as well- assuming the kid is under 18. A police report needs to happen and have the bully get something on his record- press charges and for those who watched and did nothing they are at fault too. A school is a community and they need to support a learning environment-- what did these kids learn? Teaching tolerance needs to be added to the school handbook too.
Posted by christine94127 on October 30, 2011 at 5:02 PM · Report this
@8, @78 Both good points. The parents should seek damages in civil court, AND the school is clearly culpable of negligence for letting this happen, so they should probably be the defendants. The beauty of suing the school is that it will act as a deterrence for this level of negligence in the future, and also, there's a good chance they'd actually be liable for the full amount of any damage award, unlike the kid who beat up the victim, who likely doesn't have any seizable assets.
Posted by Brooklyn Reader on October 30, 2011 at 7:43 PM · Report this
@70: Then you're an idiot. Just because YOU didn't experience bullying, or because you happened not to notice it, doesn't make the situation any different. The bully, the other students, and the administration are all culpable in this. You're not even old enough to drink alcohol yet, so your opinions are essentially worthless, anyway.

Also, it's spelled "straight". "Get your facts straight". A "strait" is a body of water.

Has anyone told you recently how pathetic you are?
Posted by Round Eyed Gaijin on October 31, 2011 at 7:30 AM · Report this
This is gross negligence and a violation of the principle of In Loco Parentis.

The school's administration should all be fired, and of course the little redneck kid immediately arrested for felony assault, harassment, and hate crimes.

Posted by chrissssssssssssssssss on October 31, 2011 at 7:34 AM · Report this
@59--I am so sick of that trite, unmerited old trope that bullies are bullies because their home life sucks and they're just reacting to the abuse they themselves suffer.

Fuck that noise--I had a shitty home life. I still wake up once or twice a month from nightmares about growing up with my dad, punching the mattress in my sleep. And it didn't turn me into a bully.

Some people are just born assholes and raging, abusive psychopaths.
Posted by Hoyt Clagwell on November 1, 2011 at 3:41 AM · Report this
Actually, what the bully needs is to be arrested first, tried, and then hopefully sent to an adolescent high-security psychiatric unit. Jails only produce hardened criminals and more violent people. There are many more stories of criminally violent teenagers turning their lives around in psych wards than in prisons.

This beating turns my stomach too. I knew too many people who went through this growing up (and turned out a lot better than their attackers), and turning a blind eye is the wrong response. Prison makes assholes into monsters, though. Too bad the US is all about punishment and profit and doesn't have a functional mental health care system.
Posted by armadillo on November 2, 2011 at 10:41 AM · Report this
I remember two homophobic assholes in my brother's class in high school. They kept harassing other students (not beating them up though) The teachers did absolutely nothing. My brother was absolutely sick of it and on Valentine's day sent a "singing valentine" from one of the assholes to the other! They knew it was him and were planning to beat him up but since he was a wrestler and a varsity swimmer and WAY more jacked then them they couldn't do anything. They did cut the homophobic crap though. I guess my point is that kids in high school are capable of letting their classmates know that being a bigot and an asshole isn't okay and of supporting their friends and classmates. It isn't just about stopping bullies, its about fostering a school atmosphere where students feel like they can stand up for each other.
Posted by Razzvio on November 2, 2011 at 10:52 AM · Report this
Criminal Charges first, then follow up with Civil Charges. This kid - the attacker - developed those attitudes at home. This repressive mindset believes that only 'punishment' modifies behavior - make sure they feel punished.
Posted by turned stomach on November 2, 2011 at 11:59 AM · Report this
Get this in the. National PRESS!!! Dan can you get it on Anderson Cooper or Drudge Report
Posted by hoglungs on November 2, 2011 at 1:10 PM · Report this
@10 has a great point - sending the kid to jail would only deepen any prejudices the kid has. the only thing our standard legal procedure is really good for is getting some people off the streets for a few years at a time and making reactionaries feel better about whatever form of justice they think they're serving.

The penal system needs a lot of reform if we're going to readily use it on children, and catching them young is the perfect opportunity to use LGBT-related community service/alternative punishment to reshape those worldviews. Also, Chillecothe is south central Ohio, where the KKK is still pretty active. Not exactly the center of inclusive culture.
Posted by dpbont on November 2, 2011 at 1:30 PM · Report this
It's upsetting when those who are against hate crime laws say "we don't want [them] to have 'special rights'", cause no one's getting any additional rights.


fergawds sake! how many of us [boys] had to eat a beat-down once or twice for basically no particular reason? I'd wager most of us. I'm sure this kid wasn't shy about targeting "the gay kid", but if he'd been straight, there's a decent chance he would have fallen under the crosshairs eventually. Especially with a mom like that.
Posted by fetish on November 2, 2011 at 2:49 PM · Report this
Physical assaulters like this should be treated no differently than sexual assaulters when it comes to pressing charges. When doing so you are documenting a pattern of behavior so in the event it happens again his prior record prevents a slap on the wrist reaction.
Posted by repete on November 2, 2011 at 2:52 PM · Report this
@68 - the school is choosing not to release info on the "enhanced" punishment and also not communicating with the public at all. It is so strange people would ask them? Sending emails to work email addresses of public employees is not bullying, and you know it. Stop being ridiculous.

Posted by gnot on November 2, 2011 at 4:28 PM · Report this
@70 Clearly they've been remiss in teaching anti-bullying and tolerance to the students. Who violently assaults a fellow student in front of a teacher? It's the students that need the training. I know they start a curriculum about how to stop bullying in kindergarten at my local school, also about kids with disabilities like autism too. This is continually reinforced and built upon, and later on in elementary school there are lessons about homosexuality, race, and religious differences. Bullying still happens but you see the kids move in to stop it, whether or not a teacher is there. My guess is they don't do that in Ohio. Just a guess.
Posted by gnot on November 2, 2011 at 4:37 PM · Report this
That punk has pissed off a whole universe of people he doesn’t even know. That universe has lots and lots of money. It’s called the disposable homosexual dollar. And when you piss off a whole universe of people with a lot of money it will change your life forever and It Won’t Get Better for that attacker. I reside in the Boston Massachusetts area and if anyone doesn’t know about the Phobe Prince Story I’ve included the link below. Although it involved a heterosexual student, her suicide changed laws here in Massachusetts. It not only outraged the state but the world as it drew national attention. That’s what this situation will do when the “punk” is tried by the court of public opinion and that’s not necessarily going to be a good thing for him, nor was it for the 8 punks involved in the Phoebe Prince case. Here’s the Wikipedia link:…
Posted by hoglungs on November 2, 2011 at 4:43 PM · Report this
Disturbing, Gut wrenching, heartbreaking, sad, infuriating, sickening, and just down right appalling are just a few words used to describe the vicious and malicious attack. Hi, my name is Casandra, and the young man that all of you have seen being brutally beaten in this Union-Scioto attack is my nephew. He is 15years old and has been avidly discriminated against for years for being homosexual. Every time I even think of this video or the attack I want to vomit. Our family can not even begin to express the magnitude of our appreciation for the support we have received on so many avenues. He, is staying strong and positive. His voice needs to be heard and through all of you and your support that is happening. This attack has changed his life for ever not only emotionally but mentally as well. Today I say to everyone don't be afraid to be who you are, god made you the way you are and just like Lady Gaga says " I was born this way" each and everyone of us were born to be who we are. Again I say the support that we have received for all of you is more than any family could have dreamed of Thank you all from the deepest part of our hearts.
Posted by music0074 on November 2, 2011 at 10:48 PM · Report this
I am not a big fan of policies intended to protect groups from being bullied or attacked. If the school district has a policy in place prohibiting harassment based on sex, race, color, national origin, religion, disability, etc. I suppose they can throw in sexual orientation and gender identity. They should also be prepared to continually add to that list as different groups are attacked for different reasons down the road. My thoughts on the message such policies send? Meh.

In my view, the clear solution is consistent prosecution of criminal acts. It is absolutely illegal to physically attack someone. I am a father of three. If my straight teenage son was similarly attacked that crime should be punished, too. Even if he doesn't fall into a group "protected" by some district policy. This thug should absolutely be arrested and prosecuted.

It does seem clear that a three-day suspension is entirely inadequate. Perhaps that punishment is appropriate to both parties for fighting - clearly not the case here. Law enforcement and school district officials are sending a message that "felony assault isn't felony assault if you're assaulting the gay kid."

Posted by jbseattlefan on November 3, 2011 at 10:18 AM · Report this
"This week, a 15-year-old teenager was severely beaten in his high school class room for being gay."

When are we going to stop blaming the victim with our language? This teenager wasn't beaten "for being gay"; he was beaten because his attacker is a violent bigot and homophobe.

Imagine if we were discussing a rape. Would you ever say, "Jane was raped for wearing a skimpy outfit," or "Laura was raped for walking home alone late at night"? Of course not! That's insanely offensive. We've collectively moved beyond that type of "blame the victim" language when it comes to sexual assault against women, but we haven't yet moved away from it when it comes to hate crimes against LGBT individuals.

Changing our language won't undo the damage here, but I think it's an important step in changing our collective perception of hate crimes and the real "reason" behind them.
Posted by sfcopywriter on November 3, 2011 at 10:49 AM · Report this
What kind of a psycho films this??? They need to be punished too!

Here's my letter to the administrators:

I question the logic of suspending the violent young man who tracked, harassed via Facebook & in person, then severely beat a another student at your high school.

A young person who causes injuries so severe that the victim has dental damage. A young person who lied in wait to attack the victim. A young person who premeditated the attack & led up to it with harassing Facebook threats.
A young person who willingly is videotaped beating another....

This young person needs to be punished beyond a three day suspension. And he clearly is a disturbed individual who needs major help.

To not provide this kind of help is to condone his behavior. A 3 day suspension lets a sociopath roam the halls of Union-Scioto. If these are his acts in high school, what will he graduate to as an adult?

As the crime was motivated by homophobia, as all evidence suggests, talk to me about how other GLBTQ students will be protected? What will deter other violent homophobic students from following in the bully's footsteps?

Again, I am seriously concerned. And hopefully, with pressure by the community and your own common sense, you will expel this student from the district and require he get the counseling, anger management & training he needs to become a sane member of society.
Posted by Ms.11 on November 3, 2011 at 11:00 AM · Report this
I'm horrified. I've sent emails. This despicable behaviour has to stop.
Posted by Lynne TCI on November 3, 2011 at 12:25 PM · Report this
UPDATE ALERT He was charge and it is national news! Let the restitution begin! See it on YES!!!
Posted by hoglungs on November 3, 2011 at 1:39 PM · Report this
THE ASSAILANT VIOLATED THE SCHOOL'S BAN ON SEX-BASED HARASSMENT. Think about it... If the assailant had been white, and the victim had been black, and the victim was out about his sexual preference for white women, and this infuriated the white assailant, causing the white assailant to harass the black victim and subsequently violently assault the black victim, would that be SEXUAL PREFERENCE HARASSMENT? No, that would be race-based harassment. Similarly, the reason why this assailant harassed and assaulted the victim was because of his sex. The assailant has no problem with people who have a sexual preference for men UNLESS THOSE PEOPLE HAPPEN TO BE OF THE MALE SEX. No need to press for a sexual orientation rule (not that I'm against one); apply the existing rule.
Posted by LexTremendae on November 3, 2011 at 7:27 PM · Report this
@99 - no black person would alert the media that they got a "potential concussion" [code for: not a concussion] under any circumstance.
Posted by fetish on November 5, 2011 at 2:25 PM · Report this
Man, that's painful to watch. I used to get bullied around that age too, and got attacked several times. To kids in this situation, please realize that there comes a point where you have no choice but to turn around and defend yourself as best you can. Ditch your backpack asap, remember that the thumb goes on the outside of your fist, try not to let the other guy grab onto you to take you down or get you into a head lock, and keep your fists up to guard your face. You're NOT going to win against a guy that much bigger than you, but sooner or later a school administrator ~will break up the fight, and fighting back can buy you some time.

Any hits you take are socially meaningless, but any damage you manage to do to someone higher on the food chain / above your weight class will be far more embarrassing. Black eyes and bloody noses are great for this, and you only need to land one strong and lucky punch to their head to make it happen. Prove to everyone watching that you're capable of suddenly flying into a testosterone and adrenaline fueled rage when provoked. Absolutely be the person you want to be 99.9% of the time, but when you're getting assaulted, let yourself turn into a savage, sadistic, wild animal.
Posted by drewm1980 on November 5, 2011 at 11:00 PM · Report this
Holy shit. I'm *so* glad to hear that the kid's mom is working with the prosecutor's office. After the kid is processed through the legal system -- and with evidence that damning, how could he NOT be? -- I would hire a lawyer and file a civil suit against the child (if that can be done) and also against the school district (for failure to protect my son). I would also find the identities of each and every single child who stood by and watched this attack happen, but did nothing, and I would go to their houses and read each and every one of them the riot act. What the heck is wrong with these kids? To just stand by and watch something like this happen? They couldn't jump in? Try to talk the bully down? Go and get an adult? Call the police? Pull the fire alarm? ANYTHING?

I am grateful that this mother's warrior spirit has been ignited and she's fighting for her son. It's horrible that she has to fight this battle at all, but she will wind up protecting kids who are "different" long after her son graduates.
Posted by angelgalwendy on November 6, 2011 at 11:43 AM · Report this
#101, your post breaks my heart. You shouldn't have to know that you sometimes need to defend yourself by becoming violent in return.

This whole situation turns my stomach and I will be following up on it in the morning.
Posted by mirage1 on November 6, 2011 at 9:05 PM · Report this
strozyk 104
Emailed. Disgusting.
Posted by strozyk on November 6, 2011 at 9:44 PM · Report this
I hate to say this but its not just a gay or sexual orientation thing. I have a girl in my class who is constantly pushed, shoved, threatened and stalked at school by three other larger girls. She was told that she cannot hit back or protect herself or she will be suspended, even though these bullying girls have been suspended before and the police were involved authorities cannot do anything because these occur "on school grounds". We are told even a restraining order wont hold. This is the sort of situation where kids get guns. At this point her mom is so frustrated she says shes going to go over to the other parents houses and threaten them if this continues. The girl even gets found in the bathroon when she tries to avoid this.They cannot afford private school. Bullying occurs for so many reasons and to everybody.
Posted by Jenesee on November 9, 2011 at 7:01 AM · Report this
Get this in the. National PRESS!!! Dan can you get it on Anderson Cooper or Drudge Report
Posted by hoglungs on November 10, 2011 at 8:39 PM · Report this
So, let me tell you the most recent news. First of all, the so called victim instigated the fight and actually threw the first punch but the video started after the fact. He was taking inappropriate pictures of this "attackers" butt and after he was told to stop, he laughed and continued. (many kids at the school will tell you that this is true). last time I checked, that is what we call sexual harassment. To be completely honest, neither one of these kids were in the right. This kid was NOT attacked because he is gay! He was attacked because of his inappropriate behavior! But the media doesn't feel like giving you that info because that doesn't make a good story! I'm not trying to justify the attack, but I am trying to get you people to understand that this was NOT an attack of a kid based on his sexuality! The media has totally warped the truth!
Posted by mcdoogles2011 on November 28, 2011 at 11:50 PM · Report this
3 days suspension is standard before an investigation is done. You hit someone at Unioto, it is an automatic 3 days until it is investigated.
First of all, he wasn't "covered in blood." Yet another statement that blows the incident out of proportion! yes, he was bleeding. But have you ever seen a fight? Someone can bleed from one hit they were hit in the right place. When I say that administration was unaware of the severity, I don't mean that they didn't realize that the kid got beat severely. I mean that they didn't realize that he was beat to the floor and was then hit multiple times more before it was stopped.

The teachers are required to stand outside their doorway because of issues in the past of kids fighting between classes. Now, unless you know of a way for the teachers to be in two places at once, you should know that it is impossible to stop EVERY single fight that occurs. You say that you are a teacher. Then, you should know that every inch of a school cannot be monitored. It's impossible. It's unfortunate that this had to happen. But, to a certain extent, it's NOT the teacher's fault.

Posted by mcdoogles2011 on November 29, 2011 at 4:47 PM · Report this
What really GRINDS MY GEARS is the fact that, excluding a hand-full of you, none of you have ever even heard of Ross County, Ohio.... Let alone Union-Scioto School District. This being the case, how can you say that they are a homophobic community and that the school administration is incompetent and needs better training?! You've never been there! For heaven's sake, Unioto has a gay cheerleader that even said to the press that he has never had trouble with anti-gay issues! I bet you didn't know that! I know multiple people from Unioto that were homosexual; all of which never had serious trouble with people bullying them! Here's an excerpt of the article he was in and the address is attached at the end:

"As the discussion was wrapping up, Unioto senior Travis Brown, who is openly gay, stood and thanked the panelists for their insights before explaining why his experience at Unioto has been a positive one.
"Unioto is a really good school for accepting me for being openly gay for all of the four years I've been here," he said. "I'm able to take a guy to homecoming or cheer for Unioto, for the football team." "

Man, Unioto sounds so awful now. Doesn't it?…
Posted by mcdoogles2011 on November 29, 2011 at 5:00 PM · Report this

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