Iowa mother wants to press charges after video shows her son with special needs being beaten up

'He didn't even have the chance to defend himself,' she said.

September 18, 2019, 10:13 AM

An Iowa mother is looking to press charges after her son with special needs was beaten up in the hallway of his high school.

Vicky Zhan is working with school resource officers at Muscatine High School to press assault charges after video of the altercation on Monday circulated throughout the school, she told Moline, Illinois ABC affiliate WQAD.

Zhan identified the boy who is punched repeatedly in the head as her son, Coby. Zhan told WQAD he has special needs.

"You don't do that to a handicapped child. My child is handicapped," Zahn said. "He didn't even have the chance to defend himself yesterday ... at all."

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The principal of the school sent out a letter to parents following the incident, saying "when an aggressive act occurs, we intervene as quickly as possible.”

The boy who can be seen throwing punches in the video has not been identified, but Principal Terry Hogenson said, per protocol, they interview all involved in an altercation and involve police if necessary.

"No act of aggression is dismissed or accepted within the school setting,” Hogenson said.

Muscatine police did not immediately respond to ABC News' request for comment to say whether or not they had been contacted by the district.

It was not immediately clear what led to the fight, but Zahn said it doesn’t matter.

"I mean if they did [say] words, let's say they did, that's not a reason to do that to him,” she said.

"He was walking down the hall, going to his first hour class," she added. "This kid came running up behind him ... I guess he hit him. My son said 'Dude!' And next thing you know it's pow pow."

In the video, Coby is seen still being hit after he falls to the ground.

Coby suffered a minor hematoma, a collection of blood that pools outside the blood vessels, and is recovering, according to Zahn. He returned to the school on Tuesday.

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