Five accused over Sharjah school bus bullying incident
Police step in after video of boy being harassed went viral on social media
Police have identified five people who they believe were responsible for a "distressing" bullying incident on a school bus.
A video shared widely on social media this week showed a child cowering as he was slapped, pushed, grabbed by the neck and threatened by fellow pupils. Police in Sharjah launched an investigation on Tuesday after the disturbing footage went viral.
Four of the accused have been charged with physical assault and issuing insults while a fifth suspect was charged with recording the video and posting it on social media without the victim’s knowledge, according to Al Ittihad.
All of the suspects have been referred to the Sharjah Juvenile Welfare Centre by Kalba public prosecution, where they will remain until investigations conclude, the newspaper said.
Prosecutors said three main suspects had admitted their participation in the bullying incident by assaulting and insulting the victim inside the school bus as shown in the footage that went viral on social media.
On Thursday, a delegation from Dubai Police visited the boy who was bullied on the bus.
In a statement, the force said the visit reaffirmed their community role and commitment to protecting children rights.
“The delegation, headed by Mona Al Ameri, director of the Happiness Committee at Dubai Police and Lieutenant-Colonel Masoud Al Hamadi, vice chairman of the committee, visited the boy’s family house to make sure he’s safe and to provide the young boy and his family moral support,” said the statement.
A delegation from Sharjah police also visited the family on Wednesday in a move to show their support, offer help and ensure the safety and protection of the public.
That delegation was headed by Colonel Ali Al Hammoudi, director of the Eastern Region Police Department, who stressed the keenness of the department to combat anti-social behaviour.
“We regularly conduct awareness lectures at the emirate schools, especially with regard to bullying among students,” said Colonel Al Hammoudi.
The Ministry of Education said earlier that it was looking into the incident closely and warned members of the public not to post the footage on social media platforms.
The ministry called on parents to play their part in tackling bullying by creating a safe and positive environment for their children.
Updated: June 29, 2019 01:21 PM