News (USA)

Bullied teen found guilty of assault in fight that left him with traumatic brain injury

HENRICO COUNTY, Va. — A Virginia teen who was brutally beaten and left with a traumatic brain injury following a school melee in September, was found guilty Friday on one count of simple assault.

Eric Martin
Eric Martin WTVR

Eric Martin was hospitalized for nine days following the September incident.
Eric Martin was hospitalized for nine days following the September incident.

Eric Martin, 14, a former student at Highland Springs High School in Henrico, Va., was charged with two counts of assault but said it was bullying that started it all, reports WTVR-TV.

“Nobody should be bullied the way I was bullied. And I’m only guilty of being myself,” Martin added.

Eric’s mother, Mary Marin, admits Eric threw the first punch, but she says he was a victim of bullying. She says Eric is constantly being attacked with gay slurs. She says the September 4 incident was “not just a fight,” but “a vicious beating.”

Eric, who was hospitalized for nine days following the attack, was left with a traumatic brain injury and now faces a long medical road ahead. He is currently being homeschooled because his doctor doesn’t want him in a classroom setting right now.

Though the judge found Eric guilty of one count of simple assault, she took his case under advisement and could dismiss that charge if he completes the anger management classes imposed by the court.

Another student accused of hitting Eric was also found guilty of simple assault, but Eric’s mother says the case is far from over.

“I want to see justice for my son. I want that the school system to be held accountable for what happened to my son and to other children,” said Mary Martin.

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A petition containing more than 140,000 signatures urged the judge to dismiss the case against Eric.

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