Middle Schoolers Arrested After TikTok 'Skullbreaker Challenge'

Prank gave classmate a major concussion
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 4, 2020 7:24 AM CST
Middle Schoolers Arrested After TikTok 'Skullbreaker Challenge'
"The safety of users is our top priority at TikTok," the company says.   (AP Photo)

A middle school student in New Jersey was hospitalized with a major concussion and two of his classmates were arrested after the "skullbreaker challenge" lived up to its name. In the dangerous prank, which has gone viral on TikTok and other video platforms, two people tell a third person standing between them that they're going to jump into the air together—and then kick the third person's legs out from under them when they jump, often causing them to fall backwards and hit their head on the ground. Mother Stacy Shenker tells NBC that her 13-year-old son spent more than 24 hours in the hospital after the Jan. 24 incident. She says first responders told her that her son had a seizure. The school later told her about the prank. "It was really very scary," she says.

Shenker says her son is back at school and "slowly making progress," but still hasn't made a full recovery. The Camden County Prosecutor's Office has charged the boy's two classmates with third-degree aggravated assault and third-degree endangering an injured victim. The latter charge suggests that the classmates, whose names and ages have not been released, left when their classmate was injured, WHYY reports. There have been numerous other cases of the "skullbreaker challenge" causing serious injuries in the US and internationally, the Washington Post reports. TikTok says it does not allow content that "encourages or replicates dangerous challenges that might lead to injury" and it will continue to remove such videos. (More TikTok stories.)

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