School District: Accused Bully Did Not Injure Himself

A Santa Rosa mom physically touched an elementary school student on the neck hard enough to leave four imprints when she confronted him in May about bullying her daughter at school, the Piner-Olivet Union School District said in a news release Thursday.

The Sonoma County school district west of Santa Rosa released the results of a third-party investigation by private investigator Chris Reynolds.

Reynolds said the incident between Delia Garcia-Bratcher and the 11-year-old alleged bully was not witnessed by adult staff, but district staff photographed the imprints on the boy's neck within minutes of the confrontation.

Garcia-Bratcher, 30, and her attorney Ben Adams deny there was a physical confrontation on May 16 at the Olivet Elementary School on Willowside Road west of Santa Rosa.

Adams has called his client a "folk hero" who defended her child from a school bully.

Garcia-Bratcher was arrested and booked in the Sonoma County jail for inflicting injury on a child.

The Sonoma County District Attorney's Office has not yet filed charges against Garcia-Bratcher, stating the investigation by the county sheriff's office is still under way.

Garcia-Bratcher is scheduled to appear in Sonoma County Superior Court Aug. 28 to see if charges will be filed.

"This is ruining my life," she said on July 17 after the most recent scheduled hearing for the filing of charges was postponed on July 17.

"Nothing has changed. There are no adult witnesses and my client says it didn't happen," Adams said this afternoon.

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Adams said his investigation determined the accused bully made up the story about being assaulted and self-inflicted the marks on his neck after Delia-Bratcher verbally confronted him about bulling her 10-year-old daughter at school.

Reynolds concluded there is no credible evidence to conclude the injured elementary school student fabricated the assault, the school district said.

"The investigation disclosed that the student who alleged that the victim self-inflicted his injuries was not supported by the physical evidence," the school district said in the news release.

Reynolds also concluded the student who claimed the alleged bully self-inflicted his injuries is the best friend of Garcia-Bratcher's son, according to the school district.

"The same student alleged he saw the self-infliction from over 150 feet away, across a crowded playground, while another version said it happened in a bathroom," the district said.

"There were no findings of ongoing, pervasive bullying at the site," the district said.

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