A group of middle school students in Gary, Ind., was attacked Wednesday morning while waiting for their school bus.
Surveillance video shows the students waiting near the area of West 24th Avenue and Gerry Street when a black, four-door Chevy Impala approached. Two men and two women got out and demanded the kids hand over their money and cell phones, the students told police.
One of the students, 14-year-old Kayla Reed, said she was punched in the face by the two women when she tried to run away from help. It was only her third day at Lake Ridge Middle School.
"I tried my best. I didn't want anybody else getting hurt or shot or anything," Reed said through a bruised mouth and while wearing clothes still speckled with blood.
Reed's mother was at work at the time, and her father, who is blind, was inside the home. Her parents say that all three Reed children will be waiting on the porch for the bus from now on.
"I'm proud she didn't -- she survived -- and she knew what to do," said the girl's father, Jeffrey Reed.
Despite the attack, the teen, an honor student, still went to school.
"I just went in and washed my face off and went to school," she said.
Police offered these descriptions of the attackers: a light-skinned black female in her mid-20s with dyed blonde hair in a pony tail. She was wearing a pink shirt and blue jean shorts. The second female was a dark-skinned black woman in her mid-30s. She was wearing a blue shirt with blue and purple pajama bottoms, and a white and black hat. Police said one of the women went by the name "Lakeisa." The black men were described as being in their late-30s or early-40s.
Reed and the other students said they did not recognize the attackers as anyone they knew.
Though not as serious, officials said there were two similar attacks. In one, a man was approached by a group asking for directions. The victim was pushed to the ground. In another, a sixth grade student waiting for a bus was approached by a group asking about a lost puppy. The student yelled and the people ran away, police said.
Anyone with information should contact Lake County Sheriff’s Department School Resource Officer Zabrina Harris at the Lake Ridge Middle School at 219-980-0730.