Parent Volunteer At California School Attacks 9-Year-Old With Hammer, District Says

| by Sarah Fruchtnicht

A parent volunteer at an Oakland, Calif., school was arrested Friday for allegedly attacking a third grader with a hammer.

Oakland Unified School District spokesman Troy Flint told KTVU that a mother who volunteered at Lafayette Elemnetary School lured a 9-year-old girl into a bathroom and assaulted her with a hammer.

The district identified the volunteer as Haseemah Diame.

The girl was on the playground around 10:40 a.m. when Diame allegedly took her to a nearby bathroom. The district says a security guard and a teacher walked in during the attack and police were called.

The girl was rushed to Children's Hospital in Oakland.

"The child is incredibly resilient and is conscious and communicating despite her ordeal,” a school supervisor wrote in a letter sent home with children Friday.

Diame was arrested and charged with assault with a deadly weapon. Police said she was allowed on campus because she is a parent who frequently volunteered there. 

It is unclear what Diame’s motive was, but Flint said that there are off-campus rivalries that may have tied into the event.

"It may have something to do with rivalries and feuds that occur off campus spilling over onto the site," he said.

The incident sent a shockwave of fear through students and parents, and school officials plan to have additional staff on campus next week to discuss the incident and how to better assist the victim and her family.

"I just saw the police come into the boys bathroom and one of the kids I was playing with they said somebody came into the school," third grader Tracy Logan told KTVU.

"That is very scary. I mean, if I were here and I see a lady with a hammer...I'd have taken my daughter right away," said parent Antoinette Badio.

"Why would somebody come and assault a little kid at school? It makes you afraid to send your kid to school 'cause it makes you feel like it's not safe for them to go to school," said parent Christopher Slaughter.

Sources: KTVU, KFOR