A 14-year-old middle schooler faces suspension Tuesday after she used pepper spray to defend herself during an attack by other students at her school.
But her parents said they gave her that pepper spray because she had been assaulted earlier in the school year.
The incident took place at Antioch Middle School. The girl said fights take place on campus every day. But when she was targeted Monday, she had a new way to protect herself.
“I don’t think a little kid should have to go through this,” said the 8th grade student Tiana.
The 14-year-old said she endured an attack on campus which was caught on video.
“I was standing in front of the class and they came up to me and they started pulling my hair and punching my head and I fell to the floor and they started kicking me and punching me,” said Tiana.
That’s when she used a canister of pepper spray her parents had given her.
“There was four to five girls hitting me and I was on the floor so I had to do something. I didn’t want to just sit there while they were hitting me and kicking me so I grabbed my pepper spray and defended myself,” said Tiana.
Her father R.J. said that inorder to protect herself, they bought her pepper spray.
“There’s a lot of jumping that goes on at that school, a lot of bullying,” he said.
Tiana’s parents said they gave her the pepper spray after she was assaulted at school earlier in the year -- an assault they said the school did nothing about.
“She did exactly what I told her to do,” said R.J. and her mother Maria added, “We’re proud of her. I’m very proud of her.”
Tiana’s parents said the school has suspended their daughter for five days but they plan to fight it. They said the school isn’t doing enough to keep kids safe.
“They need to start doing more and holding kids accountable,” said Maria.
“You’re supposed to learn in school,” said Tiana. “You shouldn’t have to worry about getting jumped in school and bullying.”
NBC Bay Area reached out to the school district and they responded by sharing a copy of the message sent out to parents -- no mention of the fight, just the pepper spray and 20 students who experienced eye irritation.