Offensive social media posts lead to fight, suspension – Family involved speaks out

This is an archived article and the information in the article may be outdated. Please look at the time stamp on the story to see when it was last updated.

MONROE -- Social media posts are causing a controversy in Monroe and a student has been suspended.

Students at Masuk high school are taking the unusual step of asking school district leaders to remove and re-locate one of their fellow students. This all comes after what many describe as disturbing behavior on social media -- with posts targeted toward minorities and the disabled.

The Monroe Police Department is involved and investigating alleged threatening behavior from this particular student. A spokesperson for the school said the student has been suspended.

The pictures on the account make jokes at the expense of African Americans, the disabled and even making fun of the tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary.

FOX 61 spoke exclusively to a family caught up in the controversy.

Eric Naposki-Abdalah is a senior at Masuk High School. He said he's been bothered by the behavior of the particular student on social media, so he approached administration about a year ago.

"I went to them hoping they'd have a zero tolerance policy for this stuff and I was thinking the kid was gonna be removed from school on a permanent level," he said.

Since the posts were continuing, he and other students approached the unidentified student, which resulted in a fight, Monday.

"Having a sister with down syndrome, this kind of stuff hits me on a personal level and I don't stand by it in any way," Eric said.

Eric's parents got involved after seeing the posts and being concerned about their children's safety.

"The more I looked into it, it really scared me cause a lot of the posts really are glorifying school shootings, like Sandy Hook and that being so close to home," Father Rene Abdalah said. "I mean we house the Sandy Hook students in Monroe and it really scared me."

Rene said he was proud of Eric for standing up to kids with disabilities but disappointed that this had been going on for so long.

"This is not the first time that its happened, this has happened in the past where he's really bullied other kids with disabilities and its really sad nowadays that this is still happening," he said.

Students created a Change.org petition asking district leaders to remove the unidentified high school junior and relocate him to a special school.

The petition claims the junior is disrupting the academic environment and creates a hostile atmosphere.

Nate Rodriguez, a Masuk High School senior, the student behind the petition, said his high school is a safe space for everyone and this behavior won't be tolerated.

“Once I got a hold of the photos and I saw just how bad they are, I knew something had to be done," Rodriguez said. "Unfortunately this had gone on for too long and was going on since last year, so I saw nobody else would take a stand so I decided that this has to be mentioned to everybody and everybody needs to understand that this behavior is not acceptable.”

That petition has more than 2,500 signatures that have been generated in the last 24 hours.

FOX 61 reached out to the superintendent who says the incident is "unfortunate."

The superintendent of schools James Agostine issued a statement:

“I want to reiterate and emphasize that any type of discriminatory or inappropriate behavior by any Monroe Public Schools students, or staff, is unacceptable and will not be tolerated.

I remain in contact with Monroe Police Chief John Salvatore, as we continue to work together on the on-going investigation into these very disturbing social media posts that have cast our entire school community in a poor light.

This incident was brought to our attention on Monday of this week and since that time it has been our primary focus.

We have established disciplinary protocols in place, for that reason I am confident that all of our actions taken to date continues to provide a safe environment for our entire school community.”

As the situation evolves, additional information will be provided.