The family believed to be at the center of a school race attack in Surrey were today branded ‘neighbours from hell’ by local residents who said the family had ‘hidden’ after being arrested on charges of attempted grievous bodily harm.
Residents of Stanwell say they have been plagued by a campaign of bullying and anti-social behavior from the family, which includes a mother in her 30s and three daughters, and say residents are ‘terrified of them “.
Horrific footage emerged last week showing a 15-year-old black schoolgirl attacked by a mob of children punching, kicking and dragging her by the hair near Thomas Knyvett College in Ashford, Surrey.
The attack was so vicious that nine of the girl’s braids were torn from her scalp during the assault, as adults were heard cheering on the attackers.
Four people were arrested on suspicion of attempted race-aggravated grievous bodily harm, including a 39-year-old woman, a 16-year-old girl and two 11-year-old girls.
Violent footage shows a group of young girls attacking a teenager in the middle of the street on Monday afternoon
The victim had nine braids ripped from his head in the attack, it has been reported
The woman and a 43-year-old man were also arrested on suspicion of child neglect and intentionally abetting and aiding the commission of a criminal act only, meaning the case can only be heard by a crown court.
The 16-year-old was also arrested on suspicion of malicious communications. All were released on bail.
The two youngest daughters of the Stanwell family allegedly carried out the attack with another youngster as their mother pushed them.
The family are said to have gone into hiding after shocking footage of the attack was posted online.
All five suspects have been banned from Surrey while police urge another 15-year-old to turn herself in.
Surrey Police Chief Inspector Dallas McDermott on Friday called the incident “disturbing” and said he was “disappointed” with the public reaction to the video.
In the footage, the attack lasted for several minutes in the public eye before anyone intervened.
In the video, a woman was filmed training the young crowd to ‘kick her in the face’, ‘catch her’ and ‘take her down’. The victim’s family claims she was assaulted for standing up for a friend who they believe was being bullied by the attackers.
Her cousin claims the girl, who has not been named, received ‘racial’ voice notes before the attack warning her that they planned to ‘pull her hair out’ and ‘leave her on the edge of the road”.
It comes as a Change.org petition calling for the school principal to be fired quickly reaches 100,000 signatures, amid growing fury from black rights groups and community leaders.
Furious protesters who staged a rally outside Thomas Knyvett College in Ashford, Surrey, marched later on Wednesday to the family’s address less than two miles from Stanwell.
Eyewitnesses said an angry protester tried to break down the front door of the property during heated scenes.
A neighbor told MailOnline: ‘They really are neighbors from hell. There are people here who just want to move because they’ve had enough. They can’t take it anymore.
“People are terrified of them. We just hope they never come back.
Locals said the family had not returned to the modern three-bedroom property since the incident.
Three rugs have been left draped over the front wall while socks and children’s toys are strewn outside the front door along with an old washing machine and a storage container full of shoes.
For Ever Family’s Raspect Fyahbingh speaks outside Thomas Knyvett College in Ashford, Surrey, following a ‘racist’ attack on a black schoolgirl
The attack happened near Thomas Knyvett College, which has been criticized for not responding quickly enough
An empty black suitcase has been left on the roof of a flat porch while a white vehicle is parked in the driveway.
A local woman, whose daughter is a student at the school, said: “People are scared and intimidated by them. There were so many skirmishes and the police were called.
“It’s just one thing after another and people don’t feel safe. Nobody wants to talk about it because we have to think about our children.
“They come from a big family and they are everywhere here. They have eyes everywhere. The whole situation is horrible. Everything is false.
A man who lives nearby said: ‘The police must have gotten involved. Once they fell victim to it when all their vehicles were destroyed in the middle of the night. They never found out who did it.
“The family installed CCTV cameras outside the house after that.”
Another neighbor said: “There is a mother and three daughters living there. People have had nothing but problems with them.
“They normally have all the windows open and every time you walk past the house you hear him yelling at the kids.
“There are usually a lot more cars outside. There is a dark colored minivan which they park outside blocking the sidewalk.
“There was a big protest here and everyone was standing in the road outside their house while the police were there.
“It’s a quiet cul-de-sac and they just seem to bring nothing but trouble.”
Chief Inspector McDermott, who works in North Surrey Neighborhood Police, said a number of officers were trying to take the sixth suspect, a 15-year-old girl, into custody.
Speaking about his initial reaction to the video, he said: “As soon as I watched it I was extremely shocked to see the level of violence used and the number of offenders who also targeted this girl – really shocking to see.
“I said that (I had) 23 years in the police, and as a policeman to watch this is disturbing, not only as a father.
“So I can understand how shocked, angry the local community, but also the wider community, to see such a vicious attack.”
Mr McDermott said that although there is still evidence to be gathered which means the suspects have been released on bail, they are subject to “strict bail conditions”.
He said: “There is a certain threshold that we have to meet to get evidence and charges.
“Unfortunately, we weren’t there yet. There are key pieces of evidence that we need to present to the CPS, so we are doing it as quickly as possible.
“We cannot simply rely on the video as evidence in this case.
“We had to release them on bail, but they were put on strict bail conditions and one of those conditions is that they cannot enter Surrey.”
On Thursday, MPs demanded an investigation amid an online backlash over staff’s response to the incident.
Asked if the police are carrying out their own investigations into the school, Chief Inspector McDermott said: ‘That’s up to the school authority. They have their own processes and policies in place and I know they do.
A police officer speaks to a protester outside Thomas Knyvett College in Surrey
Police asked people not to share videos of the fight online and asked any witnesses to come forward. There will be additional patrols in the area in the coming days
“What I can say is that the school and the teachers in the school have a duty of care when it comes to safeguarding. But it is up to the school to take care of it and it is conducting its own investigation into this subject.
“What I can say from watching the video, I think it’s fair to say that I was disappointed with the reaction from some of the audience in the immediate area.”
He added: “What I’m saying, from what I’ve seen on the video, I just think there’s a number of people in the area and it was just disappointing to see the reaction from the people. people watching this video.” People were standing around the set, for example. It’s just disappointing.
Mr McDermott said any racially motivated attack in the county receives a “high level of response”.
He said: “In this case, we are doing it with vigor.
“We want to bring these offenders to justice. We’re trying to get that vital evidence that we need to see charges, and I can say that I believe we’re not far behind.
“So we are confident, as a police force and as a local police team, that we will bring justice to the victims.”
Addressing the girl who has yet to turn herself in, Mr McDermott said: ‘There’s still one outstanding that we need to stop.’ She’s a 15 year old girl.
“She knows she is wanted, obviously her family members will know she is wanted, so I ask her and her family members to come to the nearest police station.
“That does not prevent us from doing active searches to locate her.
“We have a number of officers… trying to take her into custody.”
A protest involving around 120 people took place outside the school on Wednesday, which Mr McDermott described as “very peaceful”.
He said: “Everything was very peaceful, well organized and we had no problems there.
“My approach is that people have the right to protest, they have the right to express their frustrations and I can accept and understand why people are angry when you see a video like this.”
Mr. McDermott said officers will continue to engage with the school and the region over the coming days.