Family Says School Ignored Bullying Incident

Send Your Tips To Dave Savini

MEDINAH (CBS) — A fourth-grade suburban student says she suffered serious injuries at the hands of a female bully. But school officials say her injuries did not happen at school. 

So, what happened to Alyssa Lovergine? 2 Investigator Dave Savini reports. 

Alyssa claims she was attacked on the school playground, during recess, at Medinah Intermediate. 

Her attacker “punched me and then she took my hair, and then she started hitting me,” she says. “I got my head beat into the cement.”

It was last year, when fourth-grader Alyssa says she tried to defend classmate Vincent Wagener from a larger female student who was bullying him. Vincent says the bully turned and attacked Alyssa.  

Vincent, Alyssa and her mother, Paula, say the school failed to properly supervise students at recess or stop the attack before Alyssa’s head was repeatedly slammed into the ground. The children also claim calls for help went unanswered, even though there were adults on the playground.

“I still have my memory loss,” Alyssa said of her ongoing medical problems.  She says she suffers from headaches and her grades have been impacted.

CBS 2 obtained the official records about the alleged attack and found the school’s reports tell a different story. The incident is described as simply pushing and hair-pulling and that Alyssa had a minor scratch on her face. 

Paula Lovergine says that is not true; her daughter was seriously injured. 

“How can they deny that this happened?” she asked.

She says the school failed to get her daughter proper medical care. Then school officials fired back, suggesting Alyssa’s injuries may have happened at home. They contacted the Illinois Department of Children and Family Services (DCFS), but not until nearly two weeks later.

Paula Lovergine says no one from DCFS contacted her and she insists the injuries happened at school. 

Shortly after the incident, she filed a police report. That record indicates the alleged bully acknowledged hitting Alyssa’s head on the ground and being remorseful about it. She was disciplined at school. 

Not satisfied with how this incident was handled, Paula Lovergine hired attorney Fred Benjamin and filed a lawsuit against the school. He said the lawsuit may prompt schools to be more responsive to bullying incidents.

“I even had to sleep with my mom for awhile because I would have such bad dreams about what happened,” Alyssa said.

In a statement, school officials say they conducted a comprehensive investigation, disciplined the alleged bully and that law enforcement took no further action. 

Join Dave Savini’s Facebook Fan Page

More from 2 Investigators
  • Sue G.

    The staff at the schools do not have the funds available to hire licensed psychologists that can handle all the behavioral problems that these children have. Staff can not enforce regulations regarding bullying because most of the time it is here say, so it takes several incidences before staff will actuallystep to the plate and punish the abuser. This whole story strikes a cord with me and my 2 kids. Very taxing on the victims parents.

  • RetiredinAz1

    Here we go…..another example where the parent, who was NOT at the school, decides that her child’s story is factual and the school personnel’s version is wrong! HOW ABOUT TRYING TO BELIEVE THAT JUST MAYBE YOUR CHILD IS NOT TELLING THE TRUTH? After teaching for over 37 years I have seen my share of this type of accusation. Coiuld it be that the child was involved in an after school altercation/ And the mother wants to blame the school to attempt to get a law suit going? Again, I have seen this type of incident with my own two eyes! It is a shame that this is what out society has come to!

    • Joe

      Wow, you call yourself a teacher? The child had a black eye and fainted in class, where, in my opinion, she didn’t belong. The school should have immediately called 911 as the child suffered a head injury. The police should have been notified and charges should have been filed. I think you suffer from a touch of Alzheimers and I am soooo glad you don’t have contact with children any more

    • Laura

      If you READ the story, oh great retired teacher, you would have known that the girl who did the head-slamming ADMITTED to what she did.
      There’s a reason you retired, eh?

    • ck

      Wow, you really are a rnoron. Despite all your years and years of experience and supposed knowledge, I am so grateful you’ll never be a teacher of any child of mine.

  • RLan

    @RetiredinAz1: While I commend and respect your teaching experience, I have to cry foul on your post.

    While your statement may reflect your experience as a teacher, mine will reflect on the parent of a special-needs child who was bullied multiple times, in front of teachers no less (in some situations). Teachers who did absolutely nothing and who had only reluctantly reacted once my husband and I showed that we weren’t going to let up to ensure our child’s safety.

    We’ve seen firsthand the physical and emotional fallout of what happens to a child who has been bullied. As advocates of an anti-bullying group. we have seen the injuries of children who had similar experiences and who had suffered emotional harm from being bullied by their peers or by children significantly older than them.

    Most of these children do NOTHING to deserve such treatment. All these bullies saw were an easy target, plain and simple. After all, most of them don’t pick on those they perceive to be stronger than themselves.

    I understand and respect that you’re speaking from experience; please extend the same courtesy to those of us who speak from experience as parents. Not only is it much better than blaming the victim (which your post suggests), but perhaps both sides in various schools can unite and work together to ensure the safety of children in our educational establishments.

    • retiredinAz1

      I respect your opinion as well, RLan, but still have to say that there are many stories fabricated by children out of fear of being honest with their parents. OF COURSE it is the teachers/staff on duty to observe the behavior during recess time….a lot goes unwitnessed as one or two staff members cannot see everything involving hundreds of students. Bullying does indeed take place in our schools…no question about that….and I believe each school and school district is doing their best to address the situation,,,,,but what I am saying is what the child says is not always the entire story. Best of luck with your child.
      happy Holidays to you and your family.

      • Leroy

        READ the story, moron.

      • Joe

        I can’t believe that you were a teacher. OF COURSE children have a tendency to fabricate, but did you NOT see the photos of this child? Do you think she banged her head against the concrete and pulled out her hair to get attention? Did you even read the story? The incident DID NOT take place after school, but during a recess in the playground where there allegedly were parent monitors on the scene. If 1 or 2 staff members can’t handle the situation, then more need to be posted, and if they don’t post more, then. you are wrong, the schools are NOT doing all they can to address the situation. This particular bully has a past history of the same offense. Wouldn’t you think that this, in and of itself, would warrant closer scrutiny by one of the monitors or staff? I reiterate, I am sooooo happy you don’t teach any more.

  • School Parent

    This is an unbelievable family with no credit to their name whatsoever. This is coming from a mother who started a fist fight, an all out brawl with another mother at a childrens art show at the school, with children present, and both needed to be taken away in an ambulance. This mother tried to sue the school for this incident also I have heard. Take a look at the daughters facebook page, she is carrying on as a normal 6th grade girl, she has tried out for a travel softball team, this past year, but had to decline the position for financial reasons allegedly, she is functioning just fine. I witness this girl myself, in several situations, and she appears to be quite the bully herself. This makes me absolutely sick to read this article. This is a family looking for an easy way to make a few bucks, and it is awful. I am at the intermediate school every single day, I was there every day last year when this allegedly occurred, and saw or heard nothing of the magnitude that this article and case represents. It does seem odd this is coming so far after the actual incident. I have first hand knowledge of this family and this school, the family as I said is far from credible. The school on the other hand has always been 100% attentive to these type of issues. I have been at the intermediate school nearly every single day for the past 6 years. This is an absolute shame. I am sure the integrity of this family will be revealed as this case unfolds.

    • Joe

      Hey, school parent, I’d like to know what gives you the authority to decide the integrity of anyone. If you are at the school almost every day, then please tell me where were the playground monitors at the time of the incident? I guess they were in the corner yapping their jaws about the latest episode of Dancing with the Stars, or maybe whose husband is cheating on who. You sicken me, you piece of trash. Oh, and you’re pretty ignorant too. You state that the child carries on normally, but you don’t state that the incident took place almost 2 years ago and that physical recovery of a child of that age takes place at a very accelerated rate. Unfortunately, the psychological recovery can take many years and the child may never fully recover. I was in a position to speak to the assistant principal following the incident, and the school dropped the ball. The child presented with a head injury, and no ambulance was summoned. The child was ALLOWED to return to class, where she then passed out, and still no 911 call was placed, and when questioned why, the only answer I received was that the school nurse was not scheduled to be at that campus that day. In my opinion THE SCHOOL IS LIABLE for the safety of all students in attendance. Oh, and dumb ass, the bully admitted to hurting both children and has a history of bullying other children. This child belongs in a juvenile detention center. From your post, it seems that you have a personal dislike for this family and you are allowing this to cloud your good sense if you possess any at all. I deal with stupid people every day and today you top the list

    • D

      PS, my reply was directed towards School Parent. Quit stalking minor’s FB pages!

    • BulliesBeGone

      School Parent, let’s be sure I understand your post. You are saying that if a child has a Facebook page, tries out for softball, and is poor, then her injuries have no lasting effect and that it’s ok to slam another kid’s head into the ground, correct? I find it interesting that you gossip like a 7th grader in your post. You sound like a bully yourself.

      The fist fight was between the mother of the bully and the mother of the victim, just weeks after the attack. Draw your own conclusion from that. DUH!

      • D

        So, brainless wonder. You admit on here that you stalk peoples Facebook pages and especially in this case a minor??? I hope that girl’s mother takes note of this one. Sounds to me like you need some sort of restraining order against you. Why don’t you just mind your own business? I had had kids go through this Medinah school system myself and they never had these kind of problems, but that was a time when there were different people as principal, superintendent, and even different members of the school board. BUT, her injuries in the picture sure looks consistent with being beat up on. I’m glad the police got involved, and if that girl’s mother was smart she should report a no mind such as yourself is stalking a minor on Facebook!

  • southside

    I remember when Dave Savini used to do meaningful investigative reporting. You get a shyster lawyer involved, and now it is about the money. Shame on the parents for trotting out their precocious 9 year old on TV in the quest for the money.

    • Joe

      And you know this how, southside? Maybe it’s your child that’s the bully and you fear recrimination.

  • Alyssa And Paula Lovergine(the victim and her mother)

    Hello this is Alyssa Lovergine and Paula Lovergine(the victim) YOU PEOPLE ARE SICK I CANT EVEN BELIEVE THAT YOU WOULD THINK I WOULD MAKE UP A LIE LIKE THAT!!! ARE YOU INSANE THE BULLY ADMITTED TO HURTING ME!!!!!! I have a question why were you on my facebook page anyway?! I AM NOT A BULLY AT ALL AFTER WHAT I HAVE GONE THRU (which you know nothing about so u shouldnt be judging) I WOULD NEVER EVER BULLY ANYONE!!!!!! so dont even go there. Also you are cold blooded and heartless that you would think i would make up something like that she admitted to doing it all!! I was 9 years old!!!!!! You have absolutly no idea what we have gone thru…….. Before you start judging us first of all my mom lost her job to take care of me because i had to stay home becuase of my headaches!! I went back one day to do some homework and The bully said to one of her friends to come in and tell me that if i come back to this school that she would kill me! And yeah i did have witnesses it was a school playground think that out of the 300ish kids that were out there would see it happenening and all the supurvisors were all busy doing something else to not even answer My mom Is not exposing me…………………… My mom says: have you ever held your child so close because she wouldnt stop shaking, have you ever lost your job to take care of someone, have you held them because of the nightmares every night, so you fools out there that sit and judge me and my daughter and call my daughter a liar and i know who all you fools are, put that drink you call your friend every night to your lips and look up to god and thank him it wasnt your own child and dont ever call my daughter a liar again!!! Thank you to the people who did stick up for us

    • Joe


  • Paula lovergine

    what makes you fools so crediable your finaches? where do you get your credibility from the bank or the bar?

  • Bodyguards Sister

    Alyssa and Paula,
    I’m so so glad this finally got released to the public and I’m behind you guys 110%.

    To everyone else, they are trying to do good and let the public know about bullying. What happened to Alyssa, could happen to any child that is being bullied at school. @School Parent, you need to leave their finanical situation OUT of this issue. It is completely irrevelant, just because you might be at this school everyday for “the past 6 years”, does NOT mean that you are a person that the school would give this information to. So, stop being biased and hypocriticial and maybe realize what happened to Alyssa as something that you should protect your children from.

    Thank you to everyone that is supporting and defending this family from cynical people that are naive.

  • Paula Lovergine


  • Paula Lovergine

    what makes you all so crediable ur finances? where do you get your crediblty the bank or the BAR?

  • Savannah

    Wow this girl IS NOT lying!!!!!! You people are sad why dont you search what a real brain injury is!!!! This girl was hurt and all you can think is right away shes LYING? Thats pretty sad…..Th bully that did this injury to her admitted it! I mean she was only 9 years was just trying to be nice to a friend!!! A BEST FRIEND and thats what she got in return so shut your mouths and think about other people then yourselfs

  • Paula Lovergine (Alyssa's Mom)

    Now that all you ingnort people have comented i will refer to the expert baseball mom whos knows so much about my daughter do you know what traumatic brain injury is? do you know that my daughter lost a year of her child hood didnt play softball, didnt swim,sometimes couldnt go outside! So next time you wanna judge someone get yours facts straight or maybe just stay out of it!!! because you dont know what really happened

  • Friends, colleagues remember slain rapper Magnolia Shorty

    […] The girl’s mother says the school’s response included blaming her. Read more on CBS Chicago […]

  • Joe

    I;ll end my commentary with this: Bullies are SICK, TWISTED, INSECURE, individuals, and if the bullying is not addressed at an early age, it will result in the bully ending up behind bars or worse. These individuals need serious counseling to break the habit of thinking that they can take what they want by force, and intimidate others because of their size. I recommend that you watch a recently aired show on MTV called Bully Beat Down. It has the ability to remind the bully that there will always be someone bigger and badder than themselves, and it’s only a matter of time before they meet. Bullying has become a major epidemic in our school system, and the sad thing is that the schools are hesitant to address it, but remember, turning a blind eye to the problem will not make it go away. All you ignorant, stupid, people should just keep your idiotic comments to yourself, because I’m sure that if it was your child on the receiving end of an ass kicking from a bully, your outlook would be totally different. Or maybe not. From some of the posts I’ve read here, some of you aren’t fit to be pet sitters let alone parents.

  • paula lovergine

    I would like to thank dave savini and michelle for helping me tell the truth of my story and for all the people who stoofd behind me and my daughter alyssa i wont mention your name because people might stone you if i stoped one family from feeling the pain of watching your child go thru such pain the i did well friend or foe

  • franny

    wow problems people really big problems u think shes LYING!!! what a stalker do you like use goggles and spy on her playign softball and stalk her on facebook and everything?? i mean WHO ARE YOU to judge her!! TRUST ME IM GOING TO WARN MY DAUGHTER ABOUT YOU!! Who are you anyway??? As soon as i find out shes going to block you on facebook(: thank you

    • Joe

      Hey Franny, it’s a good thing to be careful with your children. In this day and age, we have many ways of electronically spying on each other, so these ignorant people will use any means to besmirch others based on their sick desire to wallow in the misery of others. It actually makes them feel better about their pathetic lives. Oh, and i wasn’t going to go there, but something inside me has prompted me to expose more of the facts about this incident. It seems that no one has the guts to speak the real truth about this situation , and Political correctness aside, I feel the need to add to the allegations. I’m sure that a big part of why the school system is reluctant to go after the bully is because she happens to be African-American. We all know that if Alyssa was a little African-American girl and the bully was a big Caucasian, this incident would have been splattered all over the news as a Hate crime, and those idiots, Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton would have stuck their 2 cents in. The whole incident may have even gone national. But, for the sake of this country’s political correctness, black on white crime is NOT considered a hate crime. The school system has purposely swept the whole thing under the rug hoping that this never gets out, and has even gone as far as to accuse the parent of neglect and abuse. So, you see, you need to be VERY careful and protective of your precious children as they have no defense against this heinous activity. I believe that a crime is a crime no matter who commits it, but there are those out there who would disagree, and those people are the ones to be wary of.

  • Gena Lovergine

    School parent,

    I find your opinion to be extremely offensive towards my family. Does it make you feel big to put down those less fortunate than yourself? A family’s money has nothing to do with their credibility and when were you the one to decide who is credible and who isn’t? Correct me if I’m wrong, but are you saying that because my sister is able to function as a normal child that this incident never happened? You did not live this like my family and I did, you did not see the pain and suffering that my sister went through and is still dealing with today. I would love to know what a mother is doing creeping on an 11 year old girl’s facebook page. I find it hard to believe that you are able to tell how well she is functioning from some pictures and wall posts. I know I have never seen someone’s emotional scars through their facebook photos so tell me what gives you the idea she is 100% functioning normally? You’re stating a complete biased opinion based on what you’ve heard through the grape vine, so in all actuality you really have no idea what you are talking about. My sister and my family went through hell and all you can do is throw our financial status out for the world to see. Just be glad that this didn’t happen to your child because it could have been your son or daughter on the playground that day, my sister wasn’t the first and unfortunately will not be the last. So get off your high horse and get your facts straight before you decide to open your mouth again.

  • Sunny

    Yes, something has to be done about all of this bullying. Kids are taking their life and bullies are laughing about it. We want our kids to be safe at school, feel comfortable and look forward to going to school.
    This year let’s help create a safer atmosphere for our kids with a Nationwide Rock It Across America Challenge Jan 2011. It’s more than a march or a day of wearing a purple shirt.
    The nationwide challenge is for children, adults, family friends galore, schools, churches, YMCA’s, scouts, Boys & Girls Clubs and child centers to Rock It at least 5 minutes a day for a year as we unite, support and encourage each other across the nation promoting happy and healthy minds and bodies. Laws and policies can be created, but a bully’s behavior has to change. They need to know their actions are not acceptable. Our kids can have a better year. Educators can focus on teaching.
    Rock It compliments any character building program, helps to decrease bullying, has a great anti-bully pledge, builds self-esteem, increases confidence, in addition to instilling values and positive attributes in children. Rock It makes a terrific anti-bully anthem for schools. Schools, anyone even parents can obtain a FREE Rock It jump start 5 minute version at Let’s rock joy, peace, self-control, compassion with a nationwide challenge of daily consistent input for a safer learning environment for children. Please help pass the word and share. We as adults can be part of the solution.

  • Teacher World » Alyssa’s Story

    […] Alyssa Lovergine is a fourth-grade student in a suburban school, Medinah Intermediate, who stood up for another, smaller student, Vincent Wagener, when a larger female student was bullying him last year on the playground at school. This girl then attacked Alyssa who says she was punched, her hair was pulled, and her head was repeatedly slammed into the ground. Vincent claimed that he yelled for help, but no one answered his calls even though there were adults on the playground. Not a lovely story, right? Well, it gets worse… […]

blog comments powered by Disqus
Daily Weather Reports Delivered To You!SIGN UP NOW: Get daily weather reports every morning from meteorologist Steve Baskerville!
CBS Sports Radio RoundupGet your latest sports talk from across the country.

Listen Live