Pennsylvania Mom Outraged After Son, 7, with Down Syndrome Suffers Bloodied Face on School Bus
Michael Perrin, 7, suffered two fractures, a black eye and several red lacerations on his face.
June 14, 2019
A Pennsylvania mother is calling for accountability after her 7-year-old son, who has Down syndrome, fell on the school bus in an incident that left him with a black eye and bloody face.
Elizabeth Aguero, 52, says her youngest son, Michael Perrin, had only been on the school bus to Resica Elementary School in East Stroudsburg, Pennsylvania, for about 45 minutes on the morning of Wednesday, June 5 when school officials called her to come get the boy.
“They told me there was an incident and that my son was bleeding,” Aguero tells PEOPLE. “I needed to get there immediately and [they asked], ‘Should [we] call an ambulance?’ It’s hard to describe. It was horrible. It was hard to see my baby covered in blood.”
Aguero says Perrin was crying when she arrived and the two nurses present said they didn’t know what happened, only that the little boy “fell off the bus when he was going to school in the morning.”
Photos showed Perrin with a blackened right eye and several large red scratches covering most of his face. She took Perrin to St. Luke’s Hospital’s Monroe Campus, where doctors determined the boy had two fractures, along with a swollen, leaking eye.
“Nobody wants to see their child hurt. There was no reason for my son to fall on his head,” she tells PEOPLE through tears. “It’s hard. They said they don’t know exactly what happened. The school wouldn’t allow me to see the [surveillance video].”
East Stroudsburg Area School District officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment from PEOPLE.
In the wake of the incident, Aguero urged school officials to show her the footage, but she says they initially refused. Resica Elementary School officials did not immediately respond to a request for comment from PEOPLE.
As a result, Aguero says she filed a police report with Pennsylvania State Police. A spokesperson confirms to PEOPLE that Aguero filed the report on June 6.
It was then that police showed Aguero the video they had obtained from school officials. Aguero says the footage corroborated claims that the boy fell. However, Aguero says the staff on the bus at the time was “negligent” and she wants justice for her son.
“I don’t want this to happen to another kid. Another kid may not survive this,” Aguero says through tears. “I want better training. Michael is not the first, but I want him to be the last. No one should have immunity against child negligence. That was total negligence. Michael is a special needs child. I want justice.”
Aguero says staff on the school bus should have been paying more attention to her son and is calling for better training when dealing with students who have special needs.
The incident has garnered national attention. Rapper Cardi B weighed in on her Instagram Story, writing, “#justiceformichael,” “We still speak for you Papi, you will be heard,” and, “Absolutely not today Satan,” according to Yahoo!
Now, Aguero says Perrin is healing well from his injuries, but she is determined to hold the school officials accountable.
“Life was normal, everything is good. Now this,” she tells PEOPLE. “We’re just trying to make [Perrin] as comfortable and happy as possible.”