A teenage student in Mt. Washington, Kentucky endured abuse by other teens who used racial slurs and symbols of racism as tools of intimidation. According to reports by WDRB-TV in Kentucky, the incident occurred near Bullitt East High School where the teens attend school.
The victim is a 17-year-old girl who is biracial and her alleged attackers are two White students, Hayleigh Blevins and Nicholas Chapman. At some point on February 12, an argument occurred near Blevins’ home and she and Chapman began bullying the 17-year-old victim. Chapman bumped into the girl and called her the N-word. Blevins grabbed a Confederate flag from Chapman’s truck and stood in the middle of the road and waved it back and forth. While waving the flag, Blevins began calling the victim the N-word and other derogatory names.
Blevins then used the Confederate flag pole as a weapon and began attacking the victim’s car. Over $1,000 in damage was done to the victim’s car.
Although racial slurs and the Confederate flag were used as a form of racial intimidation, school officials did not classify the incident as a hate crime. In a statement to WDRB, Eric Farris of Bullitt County Board of Education said, “Based upon information we have gathered, and information provided by the Mt. Washington Police Department, there is no evidence of a ‘hate crime.’ There is evidence of some sort of relationship involving a male student and 2 female students that deteriorated into highly inappropriate and inflammatory language and, apparently, illegal conduct off school campus.”
However, Blevins has a history of embracing the Confederate flag. She has several images of the flag on her Facebook page and even has a selfie with the flag in her photos section.
The school must also realize how the flag is being used by hate groups and racists with an agenda. In June 2015, racist Dylan Roof killed innocent Black church members at the AME Baptist Church in Charleston, South Carolina. He embraced the flag as a symbol of hate.
Blevins was arrested on criminal mischief charges and prosecutors will decide if she will be charged with a hate crime.