Please see new story with interview with Coral Springs High School Assistant Principal
By: Sharon Aron Baron
One father is on a mission to find the culprit who beat his daughter up at Coral Springs High School last Thursday while others stood there watching and filming on their cellphone cameras.
Marc Sheltra’s daughter Stephanie, a freshman Air Force ROTC candidate, and a good friend of hers, were attacked and beaten in an unprovoked attack on December 10, in a hallway that had no security cameras. Sheltra said they first beat her friend, and then blindsided his daughter off-camera and beat her as well when she tried to help.
Stephanie was thrown against a cement wall and beaten in the face with either a foot or a hand. The school did not get any medical help for Stephanie after being beaten, said Sheltra who later took her to get CT scans of her head injuries.
“The students filming were chanting “Worldstar” which is where kids upload fight videos up to be enamored by others,” said Sheltra. “The students that were big enough to stop the fight were blocking people from helping and filming it and somebody has a video of my daughter getting beat. We just had a professional fighter who just found my Facebook page and is offering a bounty for it.”
He said the school has not been helpful at finding the attacker.
We spoke to Captain Brad McKeone who disagrees, and said the school has been helpful and has been getting witness statements, however, no one saw any altercation involving his daughter getting attacked.
“They have no evidence this girl was attacked at the school,” said McKeone. “We’re not saying anything didn’t happen. She’s saying she was attacked.” He said that the SRO looked her over and did not see these injuries on her after she was attacked.
The SRO is still contacting other students. Nobody has any information where this attack took place and McKeone said that she cannot provide any information on her attackers. Sheltra disagrees and said they had a witness. Stephanie’s friend who we won’t name here, accompanied her to the ROTC area when he picked her up that afternoon and she said she saw it all, but she didn’t know who it was. Sheltra gave her name as a witness to the SRO. “While he was looking at my daughter’s face which was starting to show the damage, he said, ‘I didn’t see any of that and I didn’t know,’ and I said, ‘well you didn’t ask.’”
In the video, what disturbs Sheltra is that the boy in the glasses first makes an effort to stop the bully from beating the boy, but then he blocks other students from helping and then says: Let it happen. “I realize with the cameras these days push the kids to do more and more horrific things for fame.”
After he was thrown to the ground, the boy passed out. Stephanie held his head in her lap and while he was having convulsions, she put her finger in his mouth to keep him from biting his tongue. Sheltra was told that the boy’s assailant was arrested for battery and suspended, but the person who beat his daughter is still at large.
“The school never contacted me on this. They never contacted me some weeks ago when kids were taken to the hospital for dehydration during an event, my daughter being one. I had a crying daughter call me during my workday to tell me she had just gone through this.”
Sheltra took the boy that was beaten to McDonald’s the following day to find out more about the fight and pledged to help him in any way he could. He also asked him if there was any thing he did, any provocation into the fight, or any bad blood. He said no. The boy believed the attacker had a problem with them being in the Air Force ROTC.
Sheltra said he is torn whether or not to keep his daughter enrolled at Coral Springs High School after the incident, but the situation is different for Sheltra and his daughter.
“As a single parent, she has lost about everything that has roots for her, so when I asked her about getting out of this school she said, ‘this is the last of my friends,’ so to take anything further away – I would worry that would be the last straw.”
He says he’s going to take this to the Broward County School Board as well as the mayor of Coral Springs.
“I’ve been bullied when I was growing up and I know what it’s like. I know what it’s like not being able to go home because kids are waiting for you all the time. I’m not letting anyone else go through this.”
“It’s not about money or anything else. No one is going to fix my daughter’s state or her body, it’s about getting friends who stand around with a cellphone camera watch another friend get beaten so they can glamorize it on something similar to a YouTube. How sick has this become.”
The Youtube video has been removed. Screenshots from the video shows Stephanie on the left before the fight who was trying to get the student in the orange shorts to calm down. Her father is searching for anyone that knows which student blindsided his daughter and attacked her after her friend was beaten. The student in the orange shirts has been arrested and recommended for expulsion according to Vice Principal Michael Marhefka.
If you have any information that can lead to the attacker of his daughter, contact Marc Sheltra email@example.com 954-609-3006.