Deputies: Please stop sharing ‘disturbing’ school fight video

Putnam County sheriff, superintendent addresses viral video of student being punched at Interlachen High School

(Putnam County Sheriff's Office)

INTERLACHEN, Fla. – Deputies with the Putnam County Sheriff’s Office have been investigating a fight Friday between two Interlachen High School students that was captured on video.

On Tuesday, the Sheriff’s Office posted a message on its Facebook page, asking anyone who has shared the video to remove it from their news feeds.

The post described the video as “graphic and disturbing," saying it showed one student being repeatedly punched by another student. Sheriff Gator DeLoach said at a 3 p.m. Tuesday news conference that the incident happened while multiple students were in a bathroom.

“It made my blood boil,” the sheriff said.

He said the aggressor was given a juvenile civil citation and will undergo counseling and community service. The school is conducting its own investigation.

Deputies said they understand the outrage of those who have shared the video online but said they wanted to remind those who have spread the video that “the student who was attacked is a victim.”

“We ask as a courtesy to this student and his family that those sharing the video, please remove it from your news feed,” the Facebook post said.

DeLoach said he did not know the student’s condition as of Tuesday, but added: "To my knowledge, he did not sustain any life-threatening injuries.”

The post by the Sheriff’s Office also stressed the importance of reporting bullying.

“We would like to take this opportunity to address the seriousness of bullying. If a student, parent or visitor to the school sees a behavior that is harmful to another person, report it,” the Facebook post said. “We take each and every one of these incidents seriously and will investigate and charge as appropriate and to the highest level possible allowed by law.”

DeLoach and Dr. Rick Surrency, superintendent of the Putnam County School District, originally for the news conference to address the incident. But at the news conference, DeLoach announced that two guns had been found in the backpack of a 13-year-old student at Jenkins Middle School in Palatka. The sheriff said the discovery of the firearms was unrelated to the video.

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