Skip to content
Chokehold or innocent heckling?  Questions surround video of unconscious subway student

NASHVILLE, Tennessee (WSMV) – When Tocarro Brooks first saw video of her 14-year-old daughter lying unconscious on the floor of a subway school, hearing students laughing and other voices screaming, she felt his pulse increase.

“Oh my god, my heart was racing,” Brooks told WSMV4 Investigates.

Witness reports obtained by WSMV4 Investigates reveal conflicting accounts from staff about how the student was injured.

When Brooks says she got the call on April 27, she said a staff member contacted her to say her daughter was injured at Jere Baxter Middle School and needed to come quickly.

By the time she arrived, Brooks had said her daughter had a huge knot in her forehead and was unconscious on the floor.

“She had a severe concussion and she goes to the doctor every two weeks now,” Brook said. She has migraines every day.

Brooks said her daughter didn’t remember anything about the incident that day.

Cellphone video recorded after her injury shows the girl lying unconscious on the ground, with laughing and shouting students around her, shouting, “Dead man!

“And I got two different stories from two different school officials,” Brook said. “All (Brooks’ daughter) knew was that she heard the girl was choking her.”

This claim of choking is mentioned by not one but two different staff witnesses.

One reported that a student played with Brooks’ daughter, grabbed her by the neck and began to choke her.

This staff member said that when Brooks’ daughter walked away, she fell to the ground.

A second witness wrote that Brooks’ daughter was trying to get out of what appeared to be a chokehold.

But reports from principals and the dean of students tell different stories.

The two cite security video showing that a “friend” had her arm around Brooks’ daughter’s neck, that the video shows “no observable signs of distress” and that Brooks’ daughter lost her balance and fell to the ground.

“(I) still don’t know who told the truth,” Brooks said.

A Metro Schools spokesperson wrote in an email to WSMV4 Investigates: “I see no evidence of conflicting reports…investigations need to take multiple pieces of evidence to find context and develop a fuller picture.

Brooks said at the time of the incident she asked to see the surveillance video, but was told that because it contained other minors she could not see it.

When Brooks asked WSMV4 to investigate, we then asked Metro Schools if Brooks could see the video to clarify what happened.

But we were told that the video had already been erased from the system when we made this request.

Brooks first wrote WSMV4 Investigates about the incident in the spring, but wanted to wait for an interview, hoping she could get some answers through the Superintendent of Metropolitan Schools.

When Brooks said she couldn’t get the video and still hadn’t gotten any responses, she wanted to talk about it.

According to the Metro school spokesperson, the other student involved in the incident was punished, but he could not provide details of the punishment.

We asked Metro Schools for an interview to find out about the conflicting reports, but they declined.

The Metro Schools spokesperson said all explanations for the incident were passed on to Brooks, but she denies that claim.


Not all news on the site expresses the point of view of the site, but we transmit this news automatically and translate it through programmatic technology on the site and not from a human editor.