A local mother is looking for action after she says her transgender son was inappropriately touched by a bully.
Gabie Windsor identifies as male and prefers the use of male pronouns and goes by the name Justin. His mother Dawn Windsor says he has been bullied for two years by the same boy.
"It went from verbal to him touching [his] butt twice," Windsor said. "Then to him going into the team locker room where [he] changes by [himself] to hunt [him] down."
Teachers at the school use the male pronouns and preferred name but other students, like his bully, aren't as inclusive.
"I was wearing an animal tail to school because I always thought that stuff was cool," Justin said. "He would pull my tail and, I don't know if he'd do it purposely or by accident, he would grab my butt."
"Since I identify as a male," Justin said. "Changing in the girl's locker room is awkward. So I change in the team locker room."
The school accommodates Justin's gender identification by letting him go in the private, team locker room by himself to change before and after gym class. However, about a week ago, his bully came in with two friends.
"I had no shirt on and I all of a sudden heard them come in, taunting my name," Justin said. "It was terrifying because I'm tiny compared to him. I decided in that moment to hide in the bathroom my locker was next to and I locked the door."
Justin says the boy was yelling his birth name in a threatening way.
"In his voice, you could tell he was there to do something that would hurt me in some way," Justin said. "I was terrified of whatever they could do. Beat me up to anything else inappropriate because that's something scary nobody would ever want."
"I was furious," Dawn Windsor said. "I was ready to go in the school and flip out. That's my child. [He] had to hide. They put [him] in that room because [he] has insecurities."
Dawn says she has had numerous encounters with teachers, principals and counselors about the bullying. However, after the locker room incident, she went to the school resource officer but says there still hasn't been any action. So she pulled Justin out of school this week.
"I want to go with [him] because I don't know if [he's] going to make it home," Dawn said. "Or, if [he's] going to come home with bruises or is [the bully] going to come there with a weapon or another kid and beat [him] up? I can't do it. I can't send [him] to school knowing [he's] going to get hurt. I decided the best thing to do was pull [him] from school."
The school district implemented new bullying guidelines in 2017 to put an end to it. They have a multitude of resources and procedures on their website. It includes a new app called STOPit which allows students the ability to anonymously report bullying behavior online to avoid further repercussions.
TODAY'S TMJ4 reached out to the Oak Creek-Franklin School District Superintendent Tim Culver for comment. He was not available for an on-camera interview but said the following:
"We have a responsibility to stop bullying. We take that very seriously. We are more than willing and stand ready to help this student at a moment's notice."
Culver says he has not been made aware of the locker room incident but wants to help. He asked to give his direct number to the Windsor family so they could remedy the situation as quickly as possible.
As of now, the Windsor's are unsure what to do with Justin's future education. Dawn is debating home schooling or moving to another school.
"[He] has a right to go to school and be safe," Dawn said. "[He] has a right to be who [he] is without consequence for that."