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Colleagues, Students Defend Teacher Who Punched Teen for Calling Him the N-Word

Students say he's been verbally and physically attacked in the past.

Teaching today's generation comes with its own challenges but being susceptible to verbal or physical abuse by a student is outrageous. Marston Riley, who is Black, is said to be a dedicated and beloved music teacher. But he reached his boiling point on Nov. 1 when a student called him the n-word, and threw a basketball at him during class.

According to students who witnessed the fight, the altercation began when Riley, age 64, advised the student that he was in violation of the school's uniform policy. Riley, repeatedly, told the 14-year-old student to leave his class. The student got in the teacher's face and continued shooting off a barrage of racist slurs, including the N-word. It was also reported that he threw a basketball at the celebrated teacher.

Apparently the insults and disrespect proved to be too much, Riley punched the student in the face sending him reeling and continued to pummel the teen as other students watch. Eventually, school staff members arrived and separated the two.

The incident was caught on cellphone video.

"It was just back and forth, back and forth, and then the teacher just decided to throw a punch and that's when everything happened," a student said.

The fight resulted in Riley's arrest. The student was taken to a local hospital and treated for his injuries and released. Riley is facing termination, and a possible jail time.

The Los Angeles Unified School District said in a statement:

"We take this matter very seriously and do not condone violence or intolerance of any kind. Los Angeles Unified is cooperating with law enforcement in investigating this incident."

Ironically, many students, parents and colleagues came to the teacher's defense as stories about the incident began to circulate.

Cecilia Diaz Jimenez, who works in the school district, and four years ago worked at the high school where the fight happened, created a GoFundMe campaign named "For Mr. Riley/Teachers Deserve Respect." As of Monday afternoon, it had raised just over $37,000.

"Be mindful that the school district is looking at dismissing him and I would not doubt if the student's parents are looking into pressing criminal charges," Jimenez wrote. "I am sure Mr. Riley will need money to pay any fines, fees and lawyers. For those who continue to donate, Thank you!"

Although Riley certainly acted inappropriately, the student had no problems calling a Black man the N-word. What kind of people are raising him? He was given a directive to leave the class for being disrespectful but instead he jumped in the face of an educator at least 35 years his senior.

Reader Question: If you were in Riley's situation, what would you have done?

The Conversation (3)
votetocorrect06 Nov, 2018

I understand the teacher losing it, but if he could have gathered himself, and not done what the teen wanted, he could have had the teen suspended and arrested for asualt!

Rhondayes06 Nov, 2018

Beat him like he stole my cake. The parents of that boy failed him. It is unspeakable how these teachers are verbally and sometimes physically abused, but are subject to arrest and imprisonment if they retaliate or defend themselves. Had it been me, I would have worn myself out beating the living hell out of him and instilling respect in him. He won't do it again. That punch to his face helped him to understand. Despite what your parents told you. Black men don't have to take that shit from some pimply ass think he's the master of the universe punk.

Kentucky Sheriff’s Office to Pay Settlement for Handcuffing Special Needs Students

"1.7 million students attend schools that have cops but no counselors," according to the ACLU.

It took four years for the Kenton County Sheriff's Office in Kentucky to reach a settlement with the families of two special needs students, ages 8 and 9, who were handcuffed by a school resource officer (SRO). This month, the office has agreed to pay $337,000.

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Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole Selected as Board Chair and Seventh President of National Council of Negro Women

"My heart is overflowing with gratitude for this honor to serve as the seventh president of this organization that has been a voice of and for Black women," said Dr. Cole.

The National Council of Negro Women (NCMW) selected Dr. Johnnetta Betsch Cole as its chair and seventh president during the closing session of their 58th Biennial National Convention in Washington, D.C. Ms. Ingrid Saunders Jones, who served as NCNW's chair for more than six years, will continue to serve the organization as the immediate past chair.

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Neo-Nazi Group Claims Killer of Gay Student as One of Their Own

Judge revoked $5M bail, and instead held Sam Woodward without bail citing he's a danger to the community.

Samuel Woodward, age 21, stabbed Blaze Bernstein, age 19, a University of Pennsylvania student, 20 times in a park in January after luring him out on the premise that it was a date. In September, he was charged with murder and a hate crime, and DNA evidence was cited as proof on a knife and bloody sleeping bag.

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For the second year in a row, GQ Magazine has selected a woman for its annual Man of the Year issue. Last year's cover featured Israeli-actress, Gal Gadot. The cover was light and cute. It could've been an advertisement for "The Women's March." This year, tennis-legend Serena Williams, won the "honor." Only her cover isn't a celebration of her athletic prowess and excellence. It's outright racist.

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Update: Black Security Guard Gunned Down by Police Was Wearing a 'SECURITY' Hat

Not only was he clearly identifiable, but officers on the scene knew Jemel Roberson. A civil rights lawsuit has been filed against "Officer John Doe" and Midloathian Village.


Jemel Roberson, age 26, shot and killed on Sunday by a white cop in a Chicago suburb, was wearing a hat that said "SECURITY" on it, clearly identifying himself as an ally to the police.

Officers circled his body in video footage, after telling the unnamed officer, who is a four-year veteran of the force, that Roberson was "one of us."

The medical examiner in Cook County ruled Roberson's death a homicide by multiple gunshot wounds.

Beatrice Roberson, Jemel's mother, retained attorney Gregory Kulis who filed a civil rights lawsuit against "Officer John Doe" and the Village of Midloathian on Monday claiming the officer's actions were "intentional, willful and wanton" and that the shooting was "unprovoked," "unjustified" and "unreasonable."

"Jemel was trying to save people's lives," said Kulis. "He was working security. A shooting had just taken place inside the establishment. So he was doing his job and holding onto somebody until somebody arrived. And a police officer, it's our feeling didn't make the proper assessment and fired and killed Jemel."

Midloathian police expressed "heartfelt condolences" in a statement to the family.

Sherriff's office spokeswoman Sophia Ansari said the man shot by police, "turned out to be a guy working security for the bar."

Roberson was the father of a nine-month-old son with Avontea Boose, and was planning on getting an apartment for his family with his earnings from the job, according to Rev. Marvin Hunter, who also said Roberson was a promising keyboard player at several churches including his, and "an upstanding man."

Hunter is the great uncle of Laquan McDonald who was also killed by police in Chicago in 2014.

A vigil held outside Manny's on Monday was wrought with expressions of frustration, grief, and demands for action:

"Why? Why did you kill him?" Roberson's cousin, Candace Ousley asked. "It doesn't make sense. The police officer just saw a black man. I believe if he was indeed white, he'd be alive."

Another man at the vigil said, "This was not reckless policing, this was homicidal policing. They saw a black man with a gun. If he did not have a gun, his black skin made him a weapon.

"As a community, we demand respectful engagement. We want the police to treat our people with just a certain amount of dignity and respect. They patrol the Black community like some . . . Gestapo being judge, jury and executioner."

Another vigil attendee, Harvey Alderman Keith Price, called on State's Attorney Kim Foxx to open an investigation into the shooting.

"This could have been my son. This could have been any one of our sons," Price said. "So Kim Foxx, do the right thing, open up a full out investigation. That's what you got elected for."

Lane Tech College Prep, where Roberson graduated from, tweeted a remembrance of Roberson:

Related Story: Black Security Guard Doing His Job Shot Dead By Police

Jemel Roberson Remembered By Friends

Wisconsin Teens Throw Up Nazi Salute in Junior Prom Photo

Bigotry continues to thrive in a state that has no diversity.

A high school in Baraboo, Wisc., is currently under investigation after a picture of dozens white male students throwing up the Nazi salute at their junior prom was recently shared on Twitter.

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Black Security Guard Doing His Job Shot Dead By Police

Police officers saw, Jemel Roberson, "a Black man with a gun, and basically killed him," said a witness.

WGN Screenshot

Jemel Roberson, age 26, was working as a security guard at Manny's Blue Room bar in Robbins, Ill., when a drunken patron who he had been asked to leave earlier, returned with a gun. The patron shot four people.

Roberson, who was armed at the time, returned fire, grabbed one of the men, held him down and waited for police to arrive, according to witnesses.

"He had somebody on the ground with his knee in back, with his gun in his back like, 'Don't move,'" Adam Harris told WGN-TV.

An unnamed Midloathian police officer, according to other officers in that department who were called to assist Robbins' police, opened fire on Roberson, killing him.

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#ShoppingWhileBlack: Maryland Couple Sues Costco for $4M

A routine trip to Costco turned into a case of racial profiling.

Courtesy of WBAL TV

Barbara and Bahri Wallace loved to shop at Costco. And this trip to the megastore should have been like every other trip. However, while the couple were shopping at the Costco in Anne Arundel County in Maryland in May, the husband and wife reported they were being watched by management.

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