Chattanooga mom not backing down after her son was attacked at rec center
A 13-year-old boy says he was attacked at a Chattanooga rec center. Now, his mother is taking action hoping to prevent it from happening to anyone else.
Coretta Bowman Jackson says her 13-year-old son was attacked at the East Lake Rec Center in April and just this week her 11 year-old son was threatened by the same group of teens. Chattanooga Youth and Family Development department says it has done everything by the book and it is now a police matter.
"He hit me right here. And I was kind of dazed so I kind of stepped back a little bit," says Shaunn Jackson.
Thirteen-year-old Shaunn Jackson says a 16-year-old boy attacked him while playing basketball at the East Lake Rec Center.
"It was like five or six kids, and most of them were his cousins and stuff and they were recording and laughing and stuff," says Jackson.
"I was devastated. I was angry," says Shaunn's mother, Coretta.
Coretta says police told her not much could be done because there was no proof of who started the fight, until cell phone video of the fight surfaced this week.
"They blurted out: 'get that boy, he's 12. Kill the boy!' It was logged in his phone, the video was labeled, 'beat that boy.'"
She says a boy from the center showed her the video and she called police and they took it away as evidence.
"My son is not a punk. My son is a straight-A student. He's in the gifted classes, almost a 4.0 GPA," says Coretta.
Channel 3 stopped by the center Friday and talked to the director off camera. He says the fight was teens being teens and the center does the best it can to monitor them, which is something Coretta acknowledges.
"He has a hard job. He is not a babysitter, not a police officer. He doesn't even have a weapon or a taser or a gun," says Coretta.
Since it is an open investigation with police, Chattanooga Youth and Family Development says it can not comment on the case.
It did release a statement, saying in part: "The safety of our participants is our top priority. Our department prohibits any inappropriate behavior and all incidents are addressed quickly and taken seriously, following the department's policies and procedures."
Coretta, herself, was arrested Thursday for disorderly conduct, after confronting the mother of her son's attacker.
She says she does not regret getting arrested and says she is just sticking up for her son.
"I lost my composure, I yelled. I stuck up my middle finger. He took me to jail. There ain't no way in the world I was supposed to go to jail, standing up for what's right. The proof is in the video," says Coretta.
Coretta says she is in the process of filing a formal complaint against her son's accused attacker. The director the rec center wants to emphasize, he followed all procedures, banning the 16-year-old from the facility for a month.