Tyreek Westby was robbed and beaten so badly, he suffered a fractured nose and head injuries, police say. Now, two months later, Westby says he still has knots in his head and is prone to blacking out.
“I feel like I had too much in the world to do than to just die right there,” Westby, a 17-year-old Mavericks High student, said of the attack. “I’m still young. I could do a lot of things. I have a bright future.”
A police investigation remains under way to find all the assailants involved in Westby’s Sept. 5 beating in Fort Lauderdale, police said. So far, two 17-year-old suspects have been apprehended, the latest one taken into custody Tuesday on the charge of aggravated battery causing bodily harm, police said.
The extent of Tyreek Westby’s injuries is being evaluated, his mother said.
“They need to arrest everybody involved,” said Westby’s mother, Tessa Westby, of Plantation.
She added: “I just want justice for him. There are consequences for your actions. They almost took his life.”
Arrest reports released by Fort Lauderdale police on Wednesday blacked out the victim’s name, but Westby and his mother on Tuesday night spoke to NBC 6 about the attack.
The incident, recorded by a bus video surveillance system, began about noon Sept. 5, when Westby was using his cellphone while riding a Broward County Transit bus in the 1500 block of West Sunrise Boulevard, an arrest report said.
Westby was approached by several teenage assailants, and one attacker struck Westby in the face several times, the report said. The attacker threw him off the bus and started beating Westby while Westby was on the ground, the report said.
When Westby tried to run away, another attacker chased him and body-slammed him, the report said. Westby was kicked in the face and across his body multiple times.
“They beat him and kicked him in the head like he wasn’t a human being,” Tessa Westby said.
The assailants stole Tyreek Westby’s headphones and cellphone, then ran away. A good Samaritan picked up the boy and drove him home, his mother said.
During the investigation, police said they obtained information that led them to the suspects.
Tessa Westby said her son is now being home-schooled because of his injuries.
Tyreek Westby said "I black out every now and then," but said he otherwise has been feeling all right.
"I could have died, but in my head, I’m moving on to the next day," he said.
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Westby also was seen on surveillance video attempting to get back on the bus, but the driver didn’t open the door for him. The bus drove away.
“That bus driver seemed to not have cared overall,” Westby said.
Phyllis Berry, a spokeswoman for Broward County Transit, said that the bus operator followed procedure.
The driver “did not have the same view we see from the cameras,” Berry said. “The bus was so crowded, she did not see what was happening. She has to make sure no one inside the bus was put in harm’s way.”