Parents outraged after teen was sexually assaulted at Austin Eas

Parents outraged after teen was sexually assaulted at Austin East High School

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By ALEXIS ZOTOS
6 News Reporter

KNOXVILLE (WATE) - Parents of an Austin East High School student are outraged after their teenage daughter says she was sexually assaulted in gym class.

The 16-year-old victim says this isn't the first time something like this has happened to her at school and her parents are demanding the school system transfer her to another high school.

"I felt scared and I didn't want to go back to school at all," the victim said.

She said the attack happened on Wednesday, towards the end of school, during gym class.

"I was in gym class and this boy had his pants unzipped and he was rubbing against me and I was trying to push him away," she explained.

She said the incident didn't last long but it's not the first time something like this has happened.

"I was up in a stairwell and this boy was forcing me to kiss him," she said describing an incident that happened in the fall.

She said the school didn't take her seriously the first time around.

"I went to the principal and some of the security officers didn't believe me. They thought it was my fault," she said.

"The SRO officer seemed to think that she was complacent in that first incident, that she didn't resist, and didn't make any moves to get away from him," her stepfather Michael Bondurant said. "I was upset that they didn't trust my daughter in what they told them because if something serious happens to her in the future, she might not go and tell because she might think they won't believe her."

This time she went straight to her parents and now they aren't letting her return to Austin East.

"I won't let either of my children go back to that school," Bondurant said.

He and his wife are demanding the school transfer their daughter and son to Carter High School where they feel they will be safer.

A spokesperson for the school system says there is an open investigation. They said the proper authorities have been notified but would not comment any further.

The victim's stepfather hopes by speaking up, it will prevent something like this from happening to another student.

"It's something a parent shouldn't face and it's something a child this age shouldn't face," Bondurant said. "They should feel safe going to school."

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