Wake County schools look into report of attack on 7-year-old Muslim boy

The Wake County school system is looking into a report that a 7-year-old boy was assaulted on a school bus Friday and that his attackers made references to Islam, Muslims and Pakistan.

The principal at Weatherstone Elementary School in Cary has done an initial investigation and hopes to speak with the student’s family, Wake County schools spokeswoman Lisa Luten said Monday.

The Council on American-Islamic Relations, the nation’s largest Muslim civil rights and advocacy group, issued a statement Monday calling for a probe into the incident, which occurred Friday afternoon on a bus traveling from Weatherstone.

The boy is an American citizen of Pakistani heritage, according to the organization. Five students on the bus talked about Islam, Muslims and Pakistan, and the boy was punched in the face, had his arm twisted and was kicked in the stomach, the boy’s father reportedly told the group.

The student’s last day enrolled in Wake schools was Friday, Luten said.

No one on the bus that day reported seeing anything unusual, she said. A student sitting next to the boy reported “play-fighting” with him.

“There’s no indication that anyone surrounding them even saw them play-fighting,” Luten said. “The bus driver says there was nothing to report that day.”

Luten said the school is doing all it can to find out more information.

Ibrahim Hooper, spokesman for the Council on American-Islamic Relations, said the group wants the school system to do an investigation and determine whether police should get involved.

Sarah Nagem: 919-829-4635, @sarah_nagem

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