EASTON, Pa. (AP) — A 14-year-old white student accused of making a racist video of a black student that was shared on social media will be prosecuted on charges of ethnic intimidation and harassment, a prosecutor said Tuesday.
District Attorney John Morganelli said he was authorizing charging the boy in juvenile court but expects the boy will be given a form of probation that, if completed, would result in dropping the case.
The student recorded a high school student eating chicken wings and, in narrating the piece, refers repeatedly to the black student with a racial slur and obscenity and describes him as "being broke and on welfare" and getting free food. Morganelli called it "reprehensible."
The black 16-year-old student was earlier accused of assaulting the white student in retaliation.
His attorney, Gary Asteak, told The Morning Call he recently accepted a form of juvenile probation that would allow him to avoid a conviction.
Asteak praised Morganelli's decision to pursue charges against the boy who made the video.
"Hate speech has no place in our society, certainly not in our schools," he told lehighvalleylive.com
The white student's attorney, Michael Moyer, told The Call that the recording was "offensive, no question." But he said that "as offensive as the video was, physically assaulting someone is worse."
He said his client suffered a concussion after being kicked and punched during a confrontation Oct. 14 at Saucon Valley High School, and continues to receive physical therapy.
The prosecutor said the 14-year-old will likely have to attend a racial sensitivity program.