Student Charged with Attempted Murder Following Cafeteria Beating

Rick Ritter, CBS Baltimore, September 17, 2015

A high school football player is behind bars, as his teammate recovers from serious injuries. It’s all over a violent attack in the school cafeteria that was caught on a cell phone camera.

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Darrien McDowell is out of the hospital and back home. WJZ had a chance to speak to his family, who says he’s still in severe pain and very emotional.

Meanwhile, his classmate is being charged with attempted murder.

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Video appears to show 17-year-old Sean Johnson knocking Darrien McDowell to the ground–a teammate on his football team–following through with punch after punch.

Sean Johnson

Sean Johnson

It ends with Johnson stepping on the boy’s head and walking away as the victim has a seizure, lying in a pool of his own blood. WJZ is not showing that part of the video.

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Charging documents obtained by WJZ state the incident began when Johnson asked the victim if he stole the visor from his football helmet.

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WJZ spoke with Johnson’s mother by phone, who says: “There are two sides to every story. My son is being portrayed as someone worse than he really is.”

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Johnson is charged as an adult and is being held without bond.

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