Bullying | California

11-Year-Old Arrested at School for Mention of Gun After Speaking Out Against Anti-Gay Bullying


An 11-year-old in Yuba City, California was arrested by police at his school after he mentioned a gun while expressing anger about anti-gay bullying he had been enduring for months, FOX 40 reports:

Police arrested Brenton for making criminal threats after he said he wished he had a gun to get rid of some other students- students that, he says, had been bullying and abusing him.

"His reward for standing up for himself and saying, 'I'm no longer going to be the victim,' was a ride to the police department and a mug shot," said Jose Peraita, Brenton's father. Brenton was also finger printed, and issued a citation.

"They called me names and stuff," Brenton said. "They called me 'Brentina,' and 'homo,' and 'fag,'" he says. The Peraita's say bullies also broke Brenton's glasses. They say the problem has been ongoing for months, and they have gone to the school to complain 50 times. "We don't have a gun. That was the day he decided to stand-up for himself," Jose Peraita said. Police confirmed that no actual gun was located in the course of their investigation.

Watch the report and interview, AFTER THE JUMP...


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  1. It is really unfortunate to hear that he was made to feel so hurt. With that said, a serious threat of violence is never an appropriate response to life's adversities. I can't quite understand why the parents would take this course of action, instead of perhaps dealing with the matter more personally.

    Posted by: Kameron | Mar 9, 2011 1:25:40 PM

  2. The US is brewing a toxic combination of bully culture ( and not just kids! ) and ready access to guns.

    Posted by: Michael | Mar 9, 2011 1:33:44 PM

  3. He shouldn't have threatened anyone, but this kid was being attacked. He needs counseling and love. And those bullies need to be punished. I'm sure that he will be the one expelled though, which will just mess up his life even more.

    Hang in there, kid, because it does get better. I know at your age you don't have much of a concept of time, but when you get older, you'll be able to get away from those bullies and show that you're smarter and better than them by becoming a doctor or whatever you want to be.

    Posted by: Idiots | Mar 9, 2011 1:39:10 PM

  4. He is also 11 years old. I'm sure he didn't really understand the consequences of what he was saying and was just engaging in some "revenge fantasy."

    Yes we have to be vigilant because sometimes children end up acting on that but a "citation" is not the way to help this kid and avoid the problem.

    Posted by: X | Mar 9, 2011 1:44:09 PM

  5. I must have missed the threat. "He wished he had a gun to get rid of some bullies" is not a threat. It's describing a fantasy, and an understandable fantasy if his parents have actually gone to the school 50 times, and the school has not addressed the bullying.

    Posted by: rayrayj | Mar 9, 2011 1:47:00 PM

  6. He gets arrested and the bullies go free.


    Posted by: David Ehrenstein | Mar 9, 2011 1:48:05 PM

  7. Jesus Christ... talk about punishing the victim. And since when is "I wish I had a gun" a threat?

    If I'd been arrested every time I mentioned shooting another kid, I'd never have gotten out of elementary school. Neither would any of my friends. I also threatened to rip out tongues, wait until my mother was old and feeble and then suffocate her with a pillow, eat eyeballs, blow up the school, exile my enemies to Venus, poison my parents, build an atomic bomb in the basement, burn down the convent, push my brother overboard, and kill myself.

    Sadly, the last is the only one of these I ever tried.

    Posted by: Bryan | Mar 9, 2011 2:00:31 PM

  8. It's hard to see how this isn't a violation of federal civil rights law and/or the state anti-bullying law. The school's own administrator admits that there was bullying although he disputes that 50 complaints were made. There were no arrests for actual violence but an immediate arrest and suspension for the complainant where there was no actual threat. At a minimum, there should be a civil suit. Ideally, the school would come under criminal investigation by the CA AG and/or the US DOJ.

    Posted by: Steve | Mar 9, 2011 2:04:20 PM

  9. as a foreigner it seems so weird that a large percent of the population fight so hard for access to guns, and then are surprised that kids grow up thinking that guns are a perfectly acceptable way to defend yourself. If you see Adults fighting for the right to own a gun for self defense, why wouldn't a bullied kid think of that as a natural way to defend yourself ? It's even constitutional right ? Aside from anything bullying should be dealt with in schools. It seems like if the bullying is about a kid perceived to be gay it doesnt matter.

    Posted by: Paul | Mar 9, 2011 2:16:47 PM

  10. @ BRYAN - glad you failed :)

    Posted by: AERES | Mar 9, 2011 2:26:12 PM

  11. Yuppers . . . punish the victim and let the bullies go free.

    Is this a great country or what?

    Posted by: Continuum | Mar 9, 2011 2:31:44 PM

  12. Ridiculous, out of control bureaucracy and silly regulations and rules. Where's the common-sense? No where to be found. I feel really bad for this kid and his family.


    --Paul, 99%+ of Americans aren't going to shot today, tomorrow, next week, 1 year from now. The VAST majority of people who LEGALLY own firearms are not criminals and don't/will not go out and shoot anyone for the hell of it.

    To flip your question over, why are many non-Americans like Europeans PETRIFIED of firearms? Do you not think as a non-criminal citizen you should be allowed to own firearms to hunt, target practice, defend yourself and your home, and if not, why? Now Canadians should know better, but Europeans don't surprise me because they in general are much more into big centralized government and doing what they've been told to do by their governments. And Europe doesn't have the vast rural areas like the U.S. where police are few and far between, people hunt, etc.,

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 9, 2011 2:36:28 PM

  13. I think radioactivity took its toll in American’s brains.

    Posted by: Lexxvs | Mar 9, 2011 2:36:36 PM

  14. So what are the bullies who harassed, assaulted and destroyed his property being charged with?


    Posted by: Wes | Mar 9, 2011 2:36:42 PM

  15. You don't make threats like that. Period. I don't care who you are or what misfortunes have befallen you. In this post-Columbine, school-shootings-every-other-month era, there's no room for leniency.

    That doesn't change the fact that the bullying needs to be dealt with. But the bullying is not an excuse for this behavior.

    Posted by: poison | Mar 9, 2011 2:37:07 PM

  16. I think radioactivity took its toll in American’s brains.

    Posted by: Lexxvs | Mar 9, 2011 2:36:36 PM

    Hmmm...and what caused Europeans several generations ago to start wars that killed over 100 million people? What possessed 'Civilized' Europeans and Brits to murder MILLIONS through gigantic wars, imperialism, perverse political ideologies like fascism, Nazism, communism, Marxism, etc.,?

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 9, 2011 2:41:15 PM

  17. So what the f*** were the school authorities doing to protect him from the bullies ?
    Clearly a dereliction of duty if the school failed to act on 50 (or 1) complaints.

    The ongoing saga of bullying, now being reported in US schools (and yes it is predominantly a US phenomenon), is clearly indicative of an incompetence on the part of school authorities and/or part of the jock/macho culture which encourages agression, which is also part of many schools' deliberately fostered atmosphere..

    Posted by: JackFknTwist | Mar 9, 2011 2:51:02 PM

  18. "Zero tolerance" so often comes out as zero intelligence...

    Posted by: BobN | Mar 9, 2011 2:56:34 PM

  19. I don't understand this at all. I feel sorry for the child. With regard to Europeans and guns, myself as an Irishman the only people i believe might need guns are criminals, law enforcers, soldiers, or terrorist scum. I don't understand the thrill of owning a weapon. Europe has seen enough killing as some of you said. We're not raised to play with guns. Ive never seen one except on TV. If we want protection we try have faith in our police. Back on topic i think the authorities overreacted. The matter should have been dealt with completely differently. Sit down listen to the child. Get him counselling and punish the bullies.

    Posted by: David Browne | Mar 9, 2011 3:15:22 PM


    It IS NOT 'Most Certainly' exclusively a U.S. phenomenon. But there is a world-wide phenomenon where news out of the U.S. receives VERY WIDESPREAD reporting, where-as similar news out of other nations gets barely reported on, even in their own countries.

    Bullying is a BIG problem all over the world....N. America, UK, Europe, Asia, etc.,

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 9, 2011 3:15:48 PM

  21. Well, these rural backwater areas don't care at all about the LGBT kids/straight kids assumed to be gay, so I'm not at all surprised that this story of bullying was taken to this point. Surprised it didn't happen sooner. Obviously what he did was wrong and what he needs is an adult figure to teach him how to express his feelings without going too far. But, some kids simply aren't going to take being bullied without fighting back. The SECOND these ignorant areas start getting the message that, you know, we exist, maybe these things can be prevented, but it doesn't seem as if that's going to happen without force.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 9, 2011 3:19:04 PM

  22. My thoughts go out to this kid for what he has been going through and the pain he must feel. Time to sue these backwards school boards for their inactivity.

    Posted by: Francis | Mar 9, 2011 3:20:50 PM


    American citizens have the CONSTITUTIONAL right to own firearms, going back over 200 years. The U.S. is geographically very big, with large, lightly populated rural areas [compared to over-crowded western Europe] and people in these areas are more relaxed about firearms, they're considered important tools, and everybody hunts....with firearms of course. Also used for protection because in many places police aren't right around the corner. But all of that is neither here nor there. We have a right to own firearms. And I again don't understand the European [especially, Asians are more like Americans in this regard] fear, disdain and smug contempt for firearm ownership. It's almost childish in my eyes.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 9, 2011 3:23:20 PM

  24. @Francis,

    Some of the most decent, kindest people I've ever met come from rural 'Backwaters', and most of the biggest aholes I've met come from big 'Sophisticated' urban areas. And I was born and raised in the those big 'Sophisticated' cities and urban areas.

    Posted by: ratbastard | Mar 9, 2011 3:26:18 PM

  25. Given that the US and its states have well regulated militias, it hardly seems necessary or sensible for so many ordinary citizens to own firearms. Makes me feel less safe.

    On this topic, it is too sad that so many adults who are in some way responsible for the safety and well-being of this kid did nothing to help him, but only made it worse.

    Yup, with bureaucracy run amok, no one will use their judgement. The Seattle School District has an idiotic no-tolerance policy towards weapons that will get a kid suspended for a tiny lego "weapon". Ditto BOBN!

    Posted by: David R. | Mar 9, 2011 3:34:38 PM

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