Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn: Facts


Picture about Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn
Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn

Story: 

Justice for AvaLynn: A 5yr old girl sustains horrific injuries after being attacked in school.

Picture about Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn
Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn

Analysis:

Pictures that went viral online claim to show a badly beaten 5 year old girl AvaLynn who was supposedly injured after being attacked in her school. The story, as claimed by the girl’s mother, caught wide attention of social media and mainstream news.

Picture about Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn
Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn

The Incident

On 26 Aug. 2014, 5 year old kindergartner AvaLynn Harris returned home from school with a swollen, bruised and badly beaten face because of injuries she sustained on the playground of Arlington Elementary School in Mississippi. Her mother Lacey Harris posted photos on a Facebook page called Justice for AvaLynn, saying that her daughter was “kicked repeatedly in the face until she fell off the slide.” Ava’s injuries seem to support that she was kicked or struck in the face many times during an assault. On Aug. 28, her mother filed a police report stating another child in AvaLynn’s class had assaulted her, and also set up a GoFundMe online account for AvaLynn’s medical expenses, travel expenses, legal fees and her own lost wages.

Picture of AvaLynn Harris
AvaLynn Harris

School’s Response

The Pascagoula School District confirmed a student was injured on playground at Arlington Elementary School that afternoon, but no other children were involved in the incident. However, as the story got wide attention on social media, after an online petition on change.org asking all schools to install cameras on their playgrounds, the Pascagoula School District told WLOX 13 News (wlox.com) that they plan to invest in security cameras for the schools playgrounds.

Picture of AvaLynn Harris with her Mother
AvaLynn Harris with her Mother

Funding

The sensitive story became so popular that after mom Lacey Harris set up the Facebook page Justice for AvaLynn and the GoFundMe account, they gathered more than 99,000 Facebook likes and received more than $11,000 as of this writing. There also came up some scam websites and pages on social media to gain from the story. To this, the AvaLynn family responded saying that the only fundraiser website that has a legitimate cause for AvaLynn is the GoFundMe account linked to the Justice for AvaLynn Facebook page. They also said they do not have any Twitter, Instagram, Tumblr, or Reddit sites.

Further Investigation

The school authorities said AvaLynn was injured on the playground, falling from the slide and that there were adults present at the time. However, AvaLynn reported that she was kicked repeatedly by a classmate before falling from the slide. After the disturbing pictures of the little girl AvaLynn Harris went viral online and her story got wide attention on Facebook page, the local authorities and child protective services launched further investigations into the matter. Whether or not there was someone involved in AvaLynn’s injuries remains undetermined as of this writing. If any such thing happened, we wish and hope that AvaLynn gets her justice and little girls like her should be well protected by school authorities.

Hoax or Fact:

Undetermined.

References:

Family of baby AvaLynn asking that false fundraisers be reported
Pascagoula School District interviewing adults who witnessed AvaLynn’s fall

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Badly Beaten in School, Justice for AvaLynn: Facts