MIAMI LAKES (CBSMiami) – The Miami-Dade School district and a student charged in a stabbing at Barbara Goleman high school are odds over the reason behind the attack. The teen who stabbed another student said he was bullied, but a school district expert rejected that, saying bullying was not an issue.
The conflict was revealed Wednesday, after 18-year-old Goleman High student Frank Acosta was released from jail after he was charged with stabbing fellow student Mauricio Padron at the school Tuesday.
The arrest report released by Miami Lakes police said the two students got into an argument in the school cafeteria, which broke up when Acosta left for class. Padron also left, waited for Acosta in a stairwell, and when he arrived, tried to entice him to fight, according to the police report. Acosta tried to leave, but was blocked by other students.
According to the arrest report, Padron charged Acosta, beating him in the head and the face, as the two went to the ground.
“The victim (Padron) was clearly the aggressor in this incident,” the police report stated, “as captured on video surveillance and corroborated by witness statements.”
Those witnesses and the video also apparently showed Acosta, who is physically smaller than Padron, taking out a pen knife and repeated stabbing Padron. Acosta later told police he didn’t remember anything about the stabbing, but did remember his fear.
Acosta “stated that he was being bullied by the victim,” said the police report. “The defendant (Acosta) also stated he was in fear for his life as the victim was much larger than him and extremely aggressive towards him.”
Tuesday, a source close to the investigation called this a “textbook case of bullying”, but Wednesday morning, District spokesperson John Schuster took issue with that, saying the district no longer believed bullying was behind the attack. School officials reached that decision after consulting with a school bullying expert.
School officials did not offer an alternate reason for the attack.
Even though videotape and witnesses blame Padron as the attacker, Acosta was charged because it is illegal to carry a knife on school grounds, something he told police he understood. He also told police he didn’t consider the pen-knife a weapon because “he uses it to clean his fingernails.”
Acosta was charged with possession of a weapon on school grounds and with aggravated battery, because he used a weapon in the fight.
No charges have been brought against Padron, who was taken to Jackson Memorial Hospital for treatment of his wounds, and who remained hospitalized Wednesday.