Parents of a Mar Vista Academy student say their child was sent messages through a gaming system over the weekend, threatening to kill him at school on Monday.
For several months, Mayra Ruiz said she and her son’s father Julio Vasquez have been trying to get the bullying situation resolved with the help of school administrators. However, when she saw the messages being sent to her son through his Play Station 4 gaming console on Saturday, she said she decided to file a report with the authorities.
The issue involving her son who is in special education classes started with words, then turned into physical confrontations and now, she said, it has elevated into threats to his life.
Screenshots from the PS4 messaging service show another player telling Ruiz’s son, “I’m bringing a knife tomorrow. No joke. You’re a dead man. 2 days. In [sic] Monday.”
The same player sends several messages threatening to kill the student on Monday.
“You’re actually going to die,” the message states. “Be ready.”
“You’re fat, you wear a black hoodie everyday, you wear glasses, your skin is brown, you’re special ed…Lol.”
Ruiz’s son alerted his mother to the messages and she intervened telling the other player to stop sending threats to her son.
At that point, the player’s tone changes, telling the mother that it was all a joke and meant as a belated April Fools Day prank.
Ruiz didn’t think it was a joke and on Sunday, she went to the Imperial Beach station of the San Diego County Sheriff’s Department to file a report.
“I’m heartbroken that this is not taken serious by the school and by adults at that school,” Ruiz told Telemundo 20. “I’ve talked with the principal many times. She said it’s all going to be taken care of.It gets solved for about a week but then it repeats itself.”
Now, Ruiz and Vasquez say they’re removing their son from Mar Vista Academy and are going to home school him until they can find another school.
“I’m just scared,” she said. “I’m scared of my son’s mentality of how he’s taking this.”
“I’m very upset and angry and in shock,” the boy’s father said. “I wouldn’t expect that would happen to my son or to any other kids.”
The parents say the student who has been bullying their son at school has reached him through the console before but they have blocked him. She said somehow the student has been able to find her son through other friends.
Because Mar Vista Academy is located within the limits of the city of San Diego, the case has been turned over to the San Diego Police Department.
The school serves approximately 900 students in the 7th and 8th grades and is part of the Sweetwater Union High School District.