Mother says gang members jumped her daughters on the way home from school

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- A Southeast Memphis mother said gang members, posing as high school students, jumped her 14- and 12-year-old daughters on their way home from school.

"I was horrified and still am. I still haven't be able to fully watch the video, because it's my children," said Louise Sowers.

Cellphone cameras were rolling when her daughters were attacked last Wednesday.

Witnesses posted the video on Facebook. WREG is told the attackers bragged about what happened.

"They are gang members. They are walking around and intimidating other students," said Sowers. "It was filmed. It had to be planned. The people were already holding their cameras up waiting."

Sowers said most of the people who jumped her girls go to Wooddale High, but some are 19-year-olds dressed in school uniforms to blend in.

Memphis police told her the group was trying to gain rank in their gang.

"They grabbed me from my backpack and dragged me to the middle of the street," said Sower's daughter, Christale Deener.

Deener said she was hit and kicked, and her hair was pulled out of her head.

She said her 11-year-old friend broke loose from the fight and ran to get help.

Now Deener is afraid they'll come back to finish what they started.

"I don't know if they will have guns or something," she said.

While the Wooddale Middle School staff told Sowers they don't tolerate this behavior and they're keeping an eye out, Shelby County Schools never got back to us about what it's doing to keep students safe.

As for MPD, Sowers said she hasn't heard from investigators since the attack.

"I don't want there to be a next time. It shouldn't have been a this time. I just want something to be done and justice to be served," she said.

Sowers wants to transfer her children to another school for safety reasons, but is told the process could take up to a month, and the board will have to approve it.

A spokesperson with Memphis Police Department said she will check with investigators Tuesday to see if anyone has been caught or if they have any leads.

The attackers could face simple and aggravated assault charges.


  • hkwesson

    Gang members come in sizes shapes and nationalities remember that and they pose a threat to everyone bring back the strap try them as adults let Leslie and the girls have a crack at these stupid ads girls

  • LaDerrius

    Why did the suburbs create their own school systems? And can YOU blame them?. Our peoples are attacking each other every day.

  • Tee

    This is such a sad and horrible thing that has happened to our children. I am so glad that someone was able to go and get help. Just the other day a similar incident happened to my family member while attending a football game. These people going around victimizing others lack morals, values and love. What they don’t realize is what goes around comes around. (Karma) Let’s see if we can rally as a community to bring about change.

  • Gary

    Man I would not let one of my kids go to a Memphis school for any amount of money . Something is going to have to be done these people are getting away with way too much without consequences. Need a large prison in Mexico to put gang members in for life if have three strikes.

  • Realdeal

    To the community, listen closely to the report. This incident did not happen at the school, these children were going home which means it happened in the neighborhood. The school is not at fault, stop blaming the schools for neighborhood problems. The footage should have taken place where the fight happened, instead of filming at Wooddale Middle School.

  • VoteTheirBenefitsBack

    It’s going to get a lot worse unless the council reverses their course. Police are leaving and you’re not going to be able to hire quality officers in the future. I really hope Memphis pulls out of this nose dive, but I don’t see it coming until Memphis hits rock bottom.

  • Lied too

    Gang members are domestic terrorist, and until we start treating them that way we will continue to have these problems. Gangs fly their own flags and have no respect for the Stars and Stripes, but when there caught and at 201 poplar they wrap themselves up in ole glory and waive our constitution around proclaiming their rights. Makes me sick!

  • harviele

    The only way to end these things from happening is to hold parents accountable for the actions of their kids. The kids then need to be put into a military style school where they are forced to behave in a civil manner toward people. Back when I was a kid, if a kid went out and got into trouble, the whole family was shamed. Now the whole family stands behind their hoodlum child and proclaims his/her innocence and blames the school or law enforcement instead of taking responsibility for their own failures.

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