NAGOYA - Two middle school students have been arrested in connection with the bullying of a 14-year-old boy in Handa, Aichi Prefecture, who suffered a fractured jaw after being punched by one of them in October, the local education board announced.
The assault victim, a second-year student at a municipal middle school, had been a target of bullying since September, the board said Sunday.
The victim was told to go to a park in the city on the evening of Oct. 27, according to the municipal middle school and board of education.
In a park restroom, he was punched in the face twice by a 14-year-old classmate, sustaining a fractured jaw bone.
His parents reported the assault to police, and the classmate was arrested on Nov. 15 on suspicion of inflicting bodily injury.
Another boy, a third-year student who was allegedly in the restroom with them during the incident, was arrested on Dec. 3.
"I apologise for not being able to grasp the situation at an early stage," Naomi Mizuno, superintendent of the education board, said in announcing the bullying case.
Seven second- and third-year students were reportedly at the park when the assault took place.
The school questioned the students involved and conducted a survey on the incident.
According to the investigation, the assault on the victim was carried out at the urging of another classmate, 13, whose relationship with the boy had soured.
This boy had been hitting the victim since the previous month, the local education board said.
The victim's parents said the boy had been hit more than 50 times, while the classmate said he was just "playing."
The middle school said it would "thoroughly instruct all of its students that violence and bullying are never acceptable," adding teachers' training would be held to prevent similar cases from occurring.