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Internet 'skull-breaker challenge' causes serious injury to teen with special needs; 2 girls charged

Brandy Kendall said her son has a concussion and blurred vision, but most of all, he's heartbroken that he was humiliated.

WHITE COUNTY, Ga. — Two teenage girls are facing charges after a boy with special needs was seriously injured during a dangerous internet challenge.

Brandy Kendall said her son has a concussion and blurred vision, but most of all, he's heartbroken that he was humiliated. Kendall wants to warn other parents that this is happening.

Online, it's called the "skull-breaker challenge." Videos of the dangerous stunt usually show two people kicking the legs out from under a third as they all jump. There have been reports of children getting hurt from doing the challenge.

Kendall said her 15-year-old son has special needs and was targeted for the challenge by two girls he thought were his friends. Her son thought they were all in on the joke.

"Jaden has a heart of gold. And I felt like he was targeted. He has special needs. And the girls just said, 'hey, let's get let's go get Jaden.' Of all the people that they could have picked and they said, 'Let's go get Jaden,'" she said. 

She said when her son jumped, the video shows the two girls kicking his legs out from under him and he falls backward into a brick wall. Doctors told her he had a concussion and blurred vision.

TikTok said it removes the videos with that hashtag from its platform and a search of the website for that challenge redirects users to a page that gives counseling resources.

"There is no joke about it and it's not funny. And you can end up in the hospital with broken bones, concussions like Jaden. And then psychologically, it's pretty bad as well," she said.

She said the videos tagged on the platform are now other people warning kids not to do it.

"Children with broken arms. Children when neck braces," she said. "And there has been a lot of other people that are saying do not do this. So when these girls look this up, they knew exactly what they were, what was going to happen and what could be the consequences."

The school referred the video to the White County Sheriff’s Office and they charged the two girls with aggravated battery and disorderly conduct.

White County Schools Superintendent Laurie Burkett said when she saw the video, she immediately referred it to the police. She said there will be consequences in school as well.

Burkett wanted other educators to be on the lookout for it, too, because she said it's happening in schools all over the state.

11Alive obtained the following statement from White County Schools below: 

On Friday afternoon, White County High School administrators were made aware of a video that was posted on social media involving a TikTok challenge. White County School System takes all reports relating to student safety seriously, and therefore a thorough investigation was conducted upon receiving the report.  Based on the results of the investigation, student disciplinary procedures were followed in accordance with our Code of Conduct. Due to the nature of the incident, law enforcement was notified, and we are fully cooperating with their investigation. Our school system is not alone in addressing negative student behaviors resulting from the impact of social media. White County School System will continue to address all situations in order to promote the safety and well-being of all of our students.

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