Superintendent: Questions after girl says she was punched on bus - KMSP-TV

Superintendent: Questions after girl says she was punched on bus

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Superintendent Bruce Burger said video from the school bus showed "no evidence of the allegation that was being made." Superintendent Bruce Burger said video from the school bus showed "no evidence of the allegation that was being made."
ROCKWOOD, Mich. (WJBK) -

A local third grader says she was punched and bullied on a school bus.  We brought you her story last week.  Now, the superintendent is talking.  He says the bus video raises some questions.

Gibraltar school buses sit idle until students return Monday from spring break, but Superintendent Bruce Burger has been busy looking at school bus videos after a nine-year-old reported being punched by two boys on a recent bus ride home from school.

"One put his fist on my ear really hard, and one hit me in the eye," Kayla told us, her principal, her parents and police, prompting the superintendent to review a week's worth of tapes recorded by a school bus camera.

"We've looked through the whole tape several times and saw absolutely no evidence of the allegation that was being made," said Burger.

"Is it possible that something could have happened that wasn't caught on the camera of the bus?" I asked him.

"I suppose there is always that possibility, but the kids are very clearly visible, and the report, there's no substantiation for it," he said.

Kayla's family was not available to talk on camera, but they told me by phone they stand by their story.

The superintendent would not show us the videos, but Kayla's mom saw them and told me they show wild behavior and students, including Kayla, changing seats while the bus was moving.

I also talked to the Rockwood police chief.  He said the boys involved did admit to punching Kayla when they were questioned by a detective, but he said the department has determined this is not a police matter, and it is up to the school to take disciplinary action.

The superintendent said he has talked to the parents of everyone involved and is taking steps to restore order on the bus.

"We take bullying very seriously.  When reports are made to us, we investigate, discipline as necessary, inform and do our very best to make sure that it doesn't happen again," Burger said.

Kayla's family said they have a lawyer, and they are not sure yet when she will return to school.

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