NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — It was the photo seen around the world.
Wilson Reyes, a 7-year-old Bronx boy was shown handcuffed, allegedly for hours, after a dispute with another third grader.
On Thursday, CBS 2 got the other side of the story from the other boy, who said Reyes bullied him and deserved to be locked up.
Seth Acevedo, 9, has two years and more than a few pounds on Reyes, but he said the younger child has been bullying him for months.
“He keeps on picking on me,” Acevedo told CBS 2’s Kathryn Brown exclusively. “He kicked me once and punched me in the stomach once and then he calls me fat and names.”
The schoolyard scuffle came to a head last month when Acevedo said Reyes stole $5 from him.
“Wilson said ‘I wanna fight you’ and I said ‘I don’t want to fight, I just want my money’ and then he punched me in the face and ran, too,” Acevedo said.
Seth’s mom, Janet Ramos, called police when her son walked in the door with marks on his face and said police were only protecting one child by handcuffing another.
“I think he should have been handcuffed because he’s a very violent little boy,” Janet Ramos said.
The controversial photo, which appeared on the front page of the Post, showed Reyes handcuffed to a wall at the 44th Precinct.
His mother is now suing the NYPD for $250 million, claiming her son was “verbally, physically and emotionally abused by Police Officer Collazo and other police officers.”
She refused to speak as she rushed her son away from the media, but her attorney had plenty to say.
“It’s unconscionable. This is such a travesty what occurred here, heartbreaking,” attorney Jack Yankowitz said.
But Ramos said what’s truly heartbreaking is what her son has suffered for months at the hands of another student.
“He comes home sad he tells me ‘Mommy, I don’t got no friends, mommy nobody likes me, you know, because I’m overweight and all I want to do is have friends.’ So as a mother, you think that’s not gonna hurt me?” Ramos said.
Ramos said she already had one meeting with school administrators at P.S. 114 and Reyes’ mother earlier this year. She said she’s not sure whether another one now will help. In the meantime, both students are back in class.
The NYPD said there are a multitude of reasons why a child would be handcuffed, including for his own safety.
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