NIAGARA FALLS, NY (WIVB) – The family of a teenager, whose mother was arrested Thursday by Niagara Falls Police after video of her fighting another teenaged girl surfaced, says they have a written record proving police knew the teen was the victim of bullying.
Police charged Eula McCray with menacing and child endangerment. They say the video shows McCray slapping her daughter and forcing her into a physical confrontation with the other girl.
The family told News 4 on Friday that the 13-year-old has been bullied for months, leading up to the fight. But at a press conference that same day, police said they had no knowledge of McCray’s daughter being bullied.
“I’m not aware of any of those other complaints. I don’t know personally that [it has] anything to do with bullying,” Lt. Michael Trane told reporters.
“I was honestly surprised that he even made that statement. Because when it was told to me what he said, I went straight to file cabinet and I pulled this report out,” Martha Seaberry, who is the girl’s grandmother, told News 4.
Seaberry said McCray, who is her daughter, filed a report with Niagara Falls Police on September 6, 2013, saying her daughter was being harassed another teenager. Seaberry said she called our newsroom Saturday because she wanted to set the record straight.
“This states that the police responded to a call, my daughter called them,” Seaberry read from the police report. “My granddaughter, she was riding her bike and these girls actually knocked her off her bike, and this says that the suspect who pulled her off her bike, punched her in the head and kicked her while she was on the ground.”
“And then it goes on to say that the girl told [my granddaughter], ‘I’m going to fight you no matter what. When I find you, we’re gonna fight.’ And then my granddaughter told the police officer, ‘I’m not a fighter and I’m tired of the bullying,’ and that she was afraid. And so, I didn’t understand why that officer would get on TV and say something like that,” Seaberry explained.
Seaberry said her family is frustrated and worried about her granddaughter’s safety. They have felt discouraged about filing subsequent police reports as more instances of bullying have happened, she said, because no follow-up was been done after the the first one.
“When we filed this report, the police officer told me that there’s basically nothing that they can do, because they didn’t see it, said Seaberry. “She’s afraid that no matter where she goes, somebody’s gonna see her and mess with her. She shouldn’t have to live like that.”
That being said, Seaberry doesn’t condone her own daughter’s actions.
“My daughter – everybody has issues. No parent is perfect. I don’t like what she did, how she went about doing it, but once all of this is over with, what’s going to stop my granddaughter from still being bullied and scared to go outside?” Seaberry asked.
Questioned further by reporters at the Friday press conference, Lt. Trane said that if bullying is going on in this case, the police will do something about it. He said they don’t want to see McCray’s daughter bullied by anyone.