Assault charge dropped against 10-year-old who injured classmate in dodgeball-like game

(Photo by Micah Walter/Getty Images)

An aggravated assault charge has been dropped against a 10-year-old boy who allegedly injured his classmate during a game similar to dodgeball.

Cameishi Lindley is the mother of the 10-year-old boy. She hired Attorney Maurice Davis to represent her son and demand the charges be dropped.

According to the lawsuit, the incident happened on April 30. The boy, who was not named in the lawsuit press release, threw a ball that hit another student in the face. 

Lindley said the game was dodgeball, but the Wayne County Prosecutor's Office says the boy was actually playing a game called Tips. In Tips, a rubber ball, similar to a dodgeball, is used but does not involve throwing the ball at players. In Tips, players stand in a circle, throw the ball in the air, and then try to catch it, while jumping. 

The prosecutor says when the game was over, the 10-year-old took the ball and then threw it at a 9-year-old, hitting the child in the face. That child suffered a concussion and abrasions, and a complaint was filed with Canton Township.

After a review of the evidence presented, the 10-year-old was charged as a juvenile with aggravated assault, which is a misdemeanor charge in adult court

Lindley said the charges were "trumped-up" and were an act of racism. 

"My son is not a criminal. He was a little boy playing a game of dodgeball at school, a childhood activity that is as American as baseball and apple pie. If every child that played a game of dodgeball and threw a dodgeball at another kid was thrown in jail the vast majority of our country would be behind bars. The criminal charge against my son is ridiculous, racist, un-American, and unlawful. The only thing my son is guilty of is being a Black boy."

Davis said if the student who threw the ball was charged, then the teachers involved in the game should also have been charged.

"You cannot criminally charge a child for participating in a dodgeball game at a school. If the school intends to hold this child criminally liable for a dodgeball game, then the prosecutors need to bring charges against all of the teachers and school employees that initiated the game, allowed the children to participate in the game, and supervised them during the game. These charges are ridiculous and we demand that the charges are dropped immediately or we will pursue a civil case for malicious prosecution against the state attorney for charging him and will pursue a civil claim against the school." 

The charges have since been dismissed.