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Adults attack 13-year-old student on Denton ISD school bus, investigation underway

Adults attack 13-year-old student on Denton ISD school bus, investigation underway
Adults attack 13-year-old student on Denton ISD school bus, investigation underway 06:40

WARNING: Content may be disturbing for some.

DENTON — A criminal investigation is unfolding in Denton after a 13-year-old girl was attacked on a school bus by adults.  

The bus was leaving Bettye Myers Middle School last week when the 8th-grader says she was attacked by someone she says she didn't really know. 

Earlier in the day, she'd heard rumors that the girl, new to the school, wanted to fight her.

"She said if I didn't keep her name out of my mouth, then she was going to beat me up," explained the student we'll call "Nicole" to protect her identity.

Nicole says when she refused to get off the bus and fight, the girl hit her and she fought back to defend herself.

"I was scared," she shared...her eyes filling with tears and her voice beginning to shake.  

She says it was only when she heard the other girl yell "Mom" that she realized an adult had joined the fray.

"I was wishing I had my Mama," she admits through tears, "because nobody helped me."

Not then, not earlier. Nicole says she told a school assistant principal and a counselor about the threats earlier in the day. She says she was later told that school officials spoke to the girl who attacked her, but it didn't seem to matter.

"And I guess one of the women came and put me in a choke hold on the bus," she shared.

Other students on the bus pulled out cellphones and recorded the horrifying attack... but there was more.

Nicole says after the two women got off the bus, they followed it to her stop and when she got off the bus she was attacked again. The cellphone video shows the 13-year-old on the ground, screaming.

Somehow she was able to phone her mother.

"And I heard my baby scream out," says her mother. "And no one did anything."

Fighting back tears, Nicole's mother says she wonders why the school bus driver failed to act.

"Had he locked the door, called for help, waited for the police to arrive. Those grown adults wouldn't have been able to get on a bus, assault my child, and they wouldn't been able to follow the bus and continue assaulting her," she explains. "And then while she (a relative of the girl accused of attacking her on the bus) was out there fighting her, he's like, he just drove off."

In one of the videos shared with Nicole's mother, you can see the bus pulling away as the teenage girl is on the ground being beaten behind it.

"I didn't deserve it," says Nicole. "I don't think no kid deserves to go through anything like that."

And her message to the women who attacked her?

"I have to wake up every morning knowing that a grown adult put their hands on me. I can't walk to the store anymore. I have to look and watch every time when I see a white car ... and I have to be on watch everywhere I go. Because of you."

Denton school officials said they are unable to discuss student discipline due to privacy laws but could share that the student would not be returning to the campus.

 In the statement, a district spokesperson tells CBS News Texas in part:

"This horrible video depicts unacceptable conduct Denton ISD never condones, including an adult unlawfully boarding a school bus ... Per district policy, the driver immediately called dispatch and requested law enforcement. Drivers are not authorized to use their personal cell phones while on the bus to ensure safety. Police responded to this incident, and this is currently an ongoing, active investigation by the Denton Police Department centered around an adult unlawfully boarding the bus and injuring a child."

Denton ISD has criminally trespassed the adults involved, and those individuals are no longer welcome on any Denton ISD property."

 As for questions regarding the bus driver's conduct?

The statement provides this explanation:

"Following this situation, transportation officials addressed the driver, reinforced procedures and provided additional training."

 Nicole says she was suspended for three days, for, in her words, defending herself.

"I feel like Denton ISD failed my child," says her mother. "I could I could be a parent planning funeral arrangements if they would have had a weapon and got on a bus with a knife or a gun."

Nicole's mother's message to the district?

"Do better... if a child is reaching out to you, is telling you someone is bothering them and they try to avoid the situation, do better, help them."

So what help is there for Nicole?

"No, I'm not okay," Nicole admits. "I got hurt physically, but not just physically, emotionally. And I had to sit up at night crying about it, asking God why.  But I also pray for them cause my mom taught me, just because they did you wrong, it's all for a reason. It's all for purpose."

And her mother says she means it.

"The other night when she said, 'Mom, let's pray.' And she grabbed my hand and began to pray for them, I'm like, 'Okay, you know...she's going to be all right.'"

A Denton police spokesperson said their detective is taking it very seriously and we can expect an update in the coming days.  

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