Girl held down on bus while bullies wrote 'loser' on her forehead, family says

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COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (WOWT) -- An Iowa family is searching for answers after they say their 10-year-old daughter was held down on a school bus while students drew on her with permanent marker.

According to family, two Titan Hill School girls held down Raeann Dabney while they were all riding home on the bus. They say the girls wrote on Raeann with marker - including the word “loser” on her forehead.

"They asked if they could and I said 'no' and then they just grabbed me and held me down and colored on my face," Raeann said.

Her father Zach took pictures of his daughter because he was so upset. He wanted evidence it happened.

“All I keep saying is I’m pissed. I’m mad. I feel bad. She’s… she’s a great student, smart, intelligent. She’s in sports, cheerleading, gymnastics. You name it, she is in it. She is far from a loser," Zach said. “I seen her cry before but not nothing like that. She was literally shook, heart broken, anything in that category you seen it in her face that day."

"I was crying and trying to move but they kept holding me down," Raeann said. "It hurt my feelings for someone to write "loser" on my head.”

Titan Hill Principal Kent Stopak said he was informed about the bus ride incident on January 31. In a statement, Stopak said he met with Raeann and her parents the following day.

Family members told WOWT 6 News that district officials banned the two girls from the bus for just one day.

Stopak said the school did conduct an investigation and disciplined those involved. He said, “I will continue to work with our student body to ensure that everyone is treated with dignity and respect.“

Zach says they’ve opened an investigation with Council Bluffs Police.