Speaking to WDAF-TV, Brandi Stewart, mother of victim Nevaeh Thomas, said her daughter was brutally attacked while she was out playing with her friends in Shawnee, Kansas on August 31.
While Nevaeh was playing, Stewart said her daughter was confronted by an older White kid who subjected her to racial slurs. When Nevaeh responded to the bully’s attacks, by telling him “my black is beautiful”, she was hit in the head with a pole.
“Her feelings are more hurt because of the act of, the racial act. Not so much of the scarring,” Stewart said.
The attack left Nevaeh severely injured and unconscious and in need of medical attention. “She suffered from a concussion. She has stitches inside and outside of her cheek. She lost her tooth,” Stewart said.
The 12-year-old suspect in question is facing a felony aggravated battery charge. Johnson County District Attorney Steve Howe also said the boy could face hate crime charges, though the juvenile system proceedings vary from the adult system, WDAF-TV reports.
“How about showing a little empathy. Regardless of the race of these kids, as a parent, if my child was injured in this manor, I’m not sure how I would handle this,” attorney for the family, LaRhonna Lassiter Saunder said.
The incident left residents in the neighborhood shocked, with a parent telling WDAF-TV: “It’s kind of concerning because I have children that are different races. My son is a Black boy and you never know what’s going to happen, it’s kind of concerning.”
Another resident said: “That’s just terrible, I feel so sorry for that poor girl, she didn’t deserve that.”
“That poor little girl didn’t do anything and now she’s been hospitalized and beaten and for what? Because she’s black?,” said another.