Denver police have confirmed they're investigating the dramatic video of a teenage cheerleader being forced to do the splits.
The video shows freshman East High School student Ally Wakefield at a cheer practice in June, when she was pushed into the stretch by other students and a coach. In the video, you can hear Wakefield shouting "Please, stop!" multiple times.
The 13-year-old from Denver, Colorado says she wasn't expecting to do elevated splits that day, or to be forced to do the exercise by her coaches, something her parents say was "not right."
“This is a grown man pushing my 13-year old girl so hard against her will while she’s crying and screaming for him to stop, that he’s ripping tissue in her body,” Wakefield's mother Kirsten told a local news station. “I don’t understand why this man is still employed there.”
In a letter from Wakefield's parents to the school's athletic director, they say a doctor examined the cheerleader after practice and found she tore muscle tissue, ligaments and a hamstring during the exercise, forcing her to sit out during practice for weeks.
Since the incident came to light last week, more parents have been speaking out about the intense, often daily practices that their children were asked to attend, and sharing videos of their daughters being forced to do the same stretch. Now, Denver police are investigating the videos as a potential child abuse case.
Meanwhile, the coach shown in the videos says there's 2 sides to this story.