Alameda County

‘I Didn't Want to Die': Fremont Students Tested for HIV, Hepatitis After Being Poked By Boy With Discarded Medical Device

More than a dozen elementary school children in Fremont are being tested and treated after they were poked by a boy who found a discarded medical device.

The students' families said they are angry after it took nearly two weeks to find out about the incident. Families are still waiting for test results after the children were tested for HIV and hepatitis.

The incident occurred at Cabrillo Elementary School, where a student found the device and told classmates it was a toy that made ink stamps. Parents previously said they believed the device the boy used was a EpiPen injector needle. School officials later said the device they destroyed was a diabetic lancet and not an EpiPen.

Bryan, 8, said he is still upset about the blood he saw after being poked by a schoolmate. The second grader is one of 14 students at the campus poked by the boy with a discarded medical device.

The medical device used by the boy was discarded and found by a curb.

When Bryan was rushed by his family to a doctor he had one thought: "I didn't want to die."

Bryan's grandfather, who also is the boy's legal guardian, is angry and got so upset his "blood pressure went through the roof."

"The fact that he was poked with a needle, and that from now until who knows when Bryan may come down with something," said Bud Lofton, the boy's grandfather. "It's scary."

The Fremont Unified School District said it regrets how long it took to inform parents, but point out at first the boy who had the medical device denied poking any students. It was not until some classmates told their parents that school officials were able to track down the victims.

The district responded late Wednesday to the parental backlash.

"The fact remains it wasn't reported to us until several days later, and as soon as we got those reports some students were poked and potentially at risk, we started an investigation," district spokesman Brian Killgore said. "The Alameda County Department of Public Health was contacted, and we began following their recommendations."

The district did not say whether the boy with the lancet was disciplined.

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