Teen Girl Dies After Fight Outside of Texas Middle School

A 13-year-old girl died on April 24, a few days after she was violently attacked outside of a Texas middle school. Kashala Francis, 13, was involved in a fight outside of Attucks Middle School in Houston, Texas, on April 18, during which she was punched and kicked in the head multiple times, KTRK reported. The following Sunday, Kashala told her mother she had serious headaches and fell unconscious, according to the news station.

Kashala was rushed to Texas Children's Hospital and was pronounced dead on Wednesday, Houston Police Department spokesperson Victor Senties told the San Antonio Express-News. Kashala’s mother, Mamie Jackson, told KTRK that doctors had found a tumor and had also discovered fluid build-up in her daughter’s brain. Jackson learned about the video of the fight while her daughter was on life support and told the news station that if the fight did not happen, she would “have had more time with her baby.”

"It's not fair," Jackson told the news station. "She did not deserve that. She kept saying 'Stop.' She didn't even want to fight, but they kept going."

In a statement to the San Antonio Express-News, the Houston Independent School District said it is cooperating with police in investigating the altercation. “The Houston Independent School District [HISD] is deeply saddened to learn of the death of one of our students. We extend our sincere condolences to the student's family, friends, teachers and classmates,” the statement read. “Off-campus events that preceded the student's death are being investigated by the Houston Police Department, and HISD is cooperating. We have grief counselors available at Attucks Middle School for all who may need assistance."

It remains unclear if the tumor or the fight was the cause of Kashala’s death, ABC News reported. Senties told the news station that there will not be a clear answer until the autopsy results are revealed.

A fundraiser has been launched on Facebook to support the 13-year-old’s funeral expenses. The fundraiser has raised $15,605, exceeding its $15,000 goal as of Monday. “Community and support is everything in such tragic events. We come together to help each other out and support one another. When life happens, we happen too!” the fundraiser description read.

The North Star has reached out to the organizer of the fundraiser but did not hear back in time for publication.

Kashala's death comes nearly a month after a South Carolina fifth grader died after a fight at her elementary school. Raniya Wright, 10, was involved in a fight with another student on March 25 inside of a classroom at Forest Hills Elementary School in Walterboro, CNN reported. Colleton County Sheriff R.A. Strickland told the news station a teacher had separated the two students and said the 10-year-old had no signs of injury until she said she had a headache 10 minutes after the fight at the principal’s office. She lost consciousness and was transported to a local hospital and then later transferred to the Medical University of South Carolina in Charleston, where she died.

Last week, county officials said Raniya did not die from the fight and died of a medical condition she was born with called arteriovenous malformation, which is the tangling of abnormal blood vessels in the brain, The New York Times reported.

About the Author

Maria Perez is a breaking news writer for The North Star. She has an M.A. in Urban Reporting from the CUNY Graduate School of Journalism. She has been published in the various venues, including Newsweek, Juvenile Justice Information Exchange, City Limits, and local newspapers like The Wave and The Home Reporter.