A northern Virginia girl who had claimed that three white classmates held her down and cut her dreadlocks at northern Virginia private school now says her allegations were false.
According to The Washington Post, the grandparents of the girl -- her legal guardians -- released an apology on Monday.
“To those young boys and their parents, we sincerely apologize for the pain and anxiety these allegations have caused,” the grandparents wrote in a statement sent to The Washington Post by the school. “To the administrators and families of Immanuel Christian School, we are sorry for the damage this incident has done to trust within the school family and the undue scorn it has brought to the school. To the broader community, who rallied in such passionate support for our daughter, we apologize for betraying your trust.”
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A group of white boys pinned down a black classmate and cut off her natural hair as they taunted her as "nappy" and "ugly."
The racist attack took place Monday at Immanuel Christian School, a private K-12 academy where Vice President Mike Pence's wife teaches, reported WUSA-TV.
"They kept laughing and calling me names," said 12-year-old Amari Allen, as tears streamed down her face. "They called me ugly, said I shouldn't have been born. They called me an attention-seeker."
Three sixth-grade boys are accused of attacking their classmate on a playground slide at the Fairfax, Virginia, private school, which Amari's family pays $12,000 a year for her to attend.
Amari told the TV station that one boy covered her mouth and another pulled her hands behind her back, as a third boy used scissors to cut her medium-length dreadlocks while calling her names.
"They ran off laughing, and I was just sitting there," Amari said.
The girl didn't tell her family about the attack until Wednesday, when her grandmother noticed her hair looked different.
"It's very painful," said her grandmother, Cynthia Allen. "I want to see them dismissed from the school. I want to see something done."
Amari initially denied that someone else had cut her hair because she feared retaliation, but she eventually broke down crying and revealed the attack.
The school issued a statement expressing concern about the attack, saying the academy has a zero-tolerance policy for bullying and had contacted law enforcement to investigate the incident.
It's not clear where teachers or other school personnel were during the attack, which Amari said lasted about five minutes.
Those same three boys had previously been targeting her for abuse, such as taking away her lunch and calling her names, Amari said.
Amari's family met Thursday morning with school officials, but it's not immediately clear what actions will be taken against the boys.