Family attorneys respond to SC senator’s comments on 5th-grader’s death

State - Regional

WALTERBORO, S.C. (WSAV) – Attorneys for the mother of Raniya Wright have responded to remarks made by Senator Margie Bright Matthews calling the fight the 10-year-old was involved in a small scuffle.

On the Senate floor Tuesday, Bright Matthews said Raniya was not attacked by several students and didn’t bang her head during a fight. She said the fifth-grader continued arguing with another student in the principal’s office and suddenly complained of pain, vomited and lost consciousness.

Two days later, Raniya died at a hospital.

Attorneys for her mother, Ashley Wright, released the following statement, in part, on Tuesday:

To say that we are disappointed that Senator Matthews would use the South Carolina Senate as the backdrop for her statements less than 24 hours before Raniya Wright is laid to rest is disheartening and deeply regrettable. Every official investigating this incident from the Colleton County Sheriff’s Department to the 14th Circuit Solicitor’s Office to the Colleton County Coroner has stated that this is an ongoing investigation that would likely take weeks to complete.

The attorneys added that there has been no official conclusion whether or not bullying was involved in the incident, but said: “we can all agree that bullying is rampant in our schools in communities.”

“We don’t believe our community nor do we believe our legislators would consider it to be an exercise in futility to introduce and debate measures that would ultimately create a safer environment for our children,” the law firm stated.

The investigation into Raniya’s death continues.

A Celebration of Life will be held for her Wednesday at noon at Saints Center Ministries where media coverage is not allowed.

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