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Case Student's Hair Lit On Fire, Boy Arrested

The following information was supplied by the Racine County District Attorney Office. Where arrests or charges are mentioned, it does not indicate a conviction.

A student was charged with a felony for allegedly starting a classmate’s hair on fire Tuesday, Dec. 7, 2011 at .

The Racine County District Attorney’s Office charged Shyhein D Davidson, 17, of Racine, today with second degree reckless endangerment and disorderly conduct.

According to a criminal complaint, a police officer with the Mt. Pleasant Police Department was walking down the hall at about 11 a.m. when she smelled something burning and overheard some of the students talking about a girl whose hair was set on fire. The students didn’t know her name or who did it. The girl never reported the incident. The officer watched video surveillance of the location to try to determine the victim’s identity, but she was unable to determine the victim’s identity.

When the officer went to the lunchroom, a teacher told the officer that Davidson was almost in a fight with another boy “because Davidson had lit the other boy's sister's hair on fire.” When police confronted Davidson, he denied the allegation. Because the police didn’t have a victim, the police officer couldn’t do anything else and he was turned over to school staff until they look into the incident further.

School officials learned the girl’s name on Wednesday. During an interview, she told the police she was walking down the hallway when someone said, “Light her hair on fire.” The girl said she didn’t know what the others were talking about, and didn’t know her hair was on fire until people start screaming. When someone put her hair out, the girl had a “quarter-sized bald spot on her neck/hairline on the left side.”

Earlier during lunch, Davidson had been playing with a lighter trying to set another girl’s shirt and pants on fire. The girl told him to stop and he did.

After police told Davidson what the other witnesses had said, he admitted to starting the girl’s hair on fire and that he was “just playing with his lighter and it accidentally happened and that it wasn’t intentional.”

When the officer asked about the second girl, he said he “didn’t even like that girl and he wasn’t trying to light her clothes on fire.”

Davidson is expected to be in court for a preliminary hearing at 9 a.m. Dec. 15, 2011.

mau December 09, 2011 at 11:27 PM
Why didn't either the victim or witness' report this immediately? Seems he was involved in more than one such incident and this went on for 2 days. I know this seems unbelievable but I remember incidents like this when my son was in RUSD. Some led to law suits when the district was in denial.
Heather Asiyanbi (Editor) December 09, 2011 at 11:54 PM
@mau - I've heard of "no snitching" rules so maybe that's part of it? Maybe this girl is bullied and felt she couldn't? I don't know - either way, it's not ok for victims to not report and for witnesses to stay silent.
Sandy December 10, 2011 at 05:19 AM
Things happen every day at the schools and the kids just don't report it. I have 2 kids there and find out about incidents after the fact. The more serious ones I alert the principals to and the others end up getting overlooked because the kids figure nothing can be done to the bullies anyway. It's not a matter of the kids thinking the school will not do anything or even that they are afraid, it's that they believe nothing can really be done about it and the kids will get off scott-free. happens all the time.
Heather Asiyanbi (Editor) December 10, 2011 at 01:53 PM
@Tom - while Davidson has been charged and will appear in court, he is a minor so we can't say stuff like what you said. Sorry.
conservachick December 10, 2011 at 04:44 PM
When my kids were still babies, one of our babysitters just started going to Case. She was telling me how a group of girls would surround her bathroom stall and just start shaking the stall. The many stories like this one and hers are why I will not put my kids in those schools. I'm glad there is more choice and options available than there used to be, but I am still considering moving to a different district.
enicar333 December 11, 2011 at 02:37 AM
I'm fine with the misdemeanor charge - and the boy's homelife definetely needs to be reviewed - but the felony charge is too much. The DA went way overboard and overreached with the felony. Justice works both ways - for the victim, and for the perpertrator. Why didn't the kids report this? Maybe because it was no big deal. Where did you people grow up? Cherry Valley, land of the innocent? At 16 I was attending underage beer parties, where alcohol, pot, hash and coke was available. Kids were having sex, boyfriends beat girlfriends, kids have fights, smoking cigarettes was common, drunk and drugged driving, girls getting pregnant, girls getting abortions, shoplifting for kicks, sharing porn, etc. I didn't engage in all the behaviors described above - but I was exposed to them all. Parents - do you really know what your kids are doing after school? Then you can see why this was no big deal in the kids eyes - and TV and movies exposes them to all the vices of the adult world - and glorifies these vices. You do know that kids get drunk/high at school - right? I bet at Park H.S. they still go to the woods and light up. It never changes.
enicar333 December 11, 2011 at 03:03 AM
From National Geographic Magazine : Teenage Brains. It may shed some light on teenage behavior. read the article here: http://ngm.nationalgeographic.com/2011/10/teenage-brains/dobbs-text
kentuckychief December 11, 2011 at 02:58 PM
You are a moron. 100 to 1 odds that if this was your kid then your views would be 360. "Just because you engaged" I quote that because I dont believe for a moment you did not engage in them.... does not make it right, nor should you condone them. I know exactly what my kids are doing after school. You had the bad parents not everone else. You are one sad mistaken individual. No doubt your out on a cold sunday holding up a RECALL WAKER SIGN TOO!!!
kentuckychief December 11, 2011 at 02:59 PM
Act like a adult, get treated like an adult. Same applies here if it was your kid you would not be tooting your horn. Step back to Reality Heather.
enicar333 December 12, 2011 at 01:30 PM
UMMMM. I believe the time should fit the crime. Some hair was singed. No wound. No medical attention required. No permenant damage done. It really doesn't rise to the level beyond some severe discipline. A Felony? It's WRONG that such a charge would even be brought. It speaks ill of the so-called adults involved. It shows a serious lack of judgement and is an irrational response. Those who brought the felony charges in this case are UNFIT to be involved in the justice system, are dangerous, and need to be removed from ANY position of authority - they are reckless, rash, and irrational. LOL. Chief. If you don't think you are the clueless adult - your kids are the best at duping you. Also, just because one is a careful observer, it doesn't mean one takes part. Remember - I WAS a kid in H.S. and I reported what I saw - but to help you outfurther: no kids by personal, conscious decision; IF I had children they wouldn't be in ANY public zoo. Public education IS a failed experiment, exposes young and vulnerable children to dysfunctional children from dysfunctional/unqualified birth mothers and is geared to the lowest common denominator.

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