A sixth-grade student at a Springfield, Virginia, private school who made national headlines after accusing three classmates of cutting her hair has now said she falsely accused them.
The Washington Post reported that the 12-year-old girl, who is African-American, said three white boys, who are classmates of hers at Immanuel Christian School, held her down on the school playground a week ago and cut her hair. She said they covered her mouth and called her names.
"To those young boys and their parents, we sincerely apologize for the pain and anxiety these allegations have caused," the student's grandparents, who are her guardians, said in a statement sent to The Washington Post by the school. "To the administrators and families of Immanuel Christian School, we are sorry for the damage this incident has done to trust within the school family and the undue scorn it has brought to the school. To the broader community, who rallied in such passionate support for our daughter, we apologize for betraying your trust.
“We understand there will be consequences, and we’re prepared to take responsibility for them. We know that it will take time to heal, and we hope and pray that the boys, their families, the school and the broader community will be able to forgive us in time."
The Post reported the student and her guardians met with school officials Monday before releasing the statement.
WRC reported that the girl said she cut her own hair, but she, her family and attorney maintain she was bullied.
The student appeared on multiple local TV stations recounting her story last week. At the time, officials told WRC that officers with the Fairfax County Police Department were investigating the incident.
"We can now confirm that the student who accused three of her classmates of assault has acknowledged that the allegations were false. We're grateful to the Fairfax County Police Department for their diligent work to investigate these allegations," Principal Stephen Danish wrote in a statement emailed to parents and the community, The Post reported. "While we are relieved to hear the truth and bring the events of the past few days to a close, we also feel tremendous pain for the victims and the hurt on both sides of this conflict. We recognize that we now enter what will be a long season of healing."
Breaking: From Immanuel Christian School “...the student who accused three of her classmates of assault has acknowledged that the allegations were false.” Attached is a statement from the family. pic.twitter.com/qU1itfO4jZ— Carl Willis (@CarlWillisTV) September 30, 2019
The girl and her guardians did not respond to The Post's requests for additional comment.
Immanuel Christian is a private school teaching students in kindergarten through 10th grade. Tuition is $11,500, The Post reported. According to school officials, about 11% of the student population is African-American and fewer than half of the 469 students are people of color.
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