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Daphne Melin, 32, of Long Island was arrested this week after video surfaced of her egging on a schoolyard fight between her 12-year-old daughter and a fellow tween classmate.
Cell phone footage of the fight, which occurred outside a local school this past Sunday, also allegedly depicts Melin spitting on another youngster, and then kneeing her in the neck and head at least twice.
She says the fight was the result of cyberbullying.
Speaking out in her own defense, Daphne Melin told ABC News that she repeatedly spoke to school officials and law enforcement about the group of girls harassing her daughter via Facebook. Fed up, she decided to take matters into her own hands, urging her daughter to confront the girls and fight.
In the video, one can hear an adult voice, which the Daily News has identified as Melin, shouting words of encouragement, including "Take her down!" and "Punch her in the face!"
Melin is also accused of attacking a young girl when she instead asked her to intervene.
As a result of the schoolyard melee, Melin has been charged with attempted assault and endangering the welfare of a child, and now faces up to a year in jail.
Her dangerous and neglectful behavior will also likely lead to an investigation by Children & Family Services, potentially causing her to lose custody of her three children, or be monitored for quite some time.
Though the potential punishment for sanctioning and engaging in violence involving 12-year-olds may seem steep, it could be worse. Daphne Melin is quite lucky no one was seriously hurt.
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