Moreno Valley school fight: Candlelight vigil held for 13-year-old after deadly on-campus attack

MORENO VALLEY, Calif. (KABC) -- Students and teachers gathered Thursday night to remember a 13-year-old student who died after a brutal attack at a Moreno Valley middle school.

The school community held a candlelight vigil at Landmark Middle, where the victim - identified as Diego - went to school.

Diego was pronounced clinically dead Tuesday evening, more than a week after being beaten by two classmates in an assault caught on cell phone video.

MORE: 13-year-old boy dies just over a week after campus attack at Moreno Valley middle school, authorities say

Martinrex Kedziora, Moreno Valley Unified School District superintendent, spoke after the service.

"I want you to know this was all done for Diego, to remember him and to let our community know that we are never going to forget and that we value and support our community through this tragedy.

The two students suspected in the brutal attack were charged with assault by means of force likely to produce great bodily injury, the Riverside County District Attorney's office announced Thursday. One of the students has an initial hearing scheduled on Oct. 2, and the second has a pre-trial hearing scheduled for Oct. 15. Their identities were not disclosed due to their ages.

Parents are asking for answers as to what changes will be made following Diego's death.

MORE: Moreno Valley parents demand answers after middle school assault

They want more information from the school district about what exactly happened. They also want a plan on how the school is going to crack down on bullies and make sure it's safer for students moving forward.

"Kids been getting bullied and they're not doing anything. We've asked them to change the policies, the rules a little bit more stricter, but that hasn't happened," said Karla Palumbo, a parent.

The middle school has a troubled, violent history. A 12-year-old boy died in 1998 following a fight with a friend over a basketball. In March of this year, deputies had to deploy pepper balls to break up an on-campus fight involving 50 students.

Vanessa Gonzalez's daughter was a 6th grader at the time.

"I know that it can happen at any school but the fact that it keeps happening at the same school is concerning," Gonzalez said.

Kedziora says the school has added extra security, and instances of violence on campus isn't taken lightly by the school.

When he was asked if Diego's death could have been prevented, Kedziora said the incident was still under investigation and he couldn't comment on it.

"On behalf of the City Council, I want to extend my sincere condolences to Diego's family and friends. No one should have to endure the pain of such a terrible loss," Moreno Valley Mayor Yxstian Gutierrez said in a statement. "This is a life-changing tragedy for everyone involved, including the staff and students at Landmark Middle School."

Anyone with information about the incident is asked to call sheriff's Investigator Joshua Manjarrez at 951-955-2777.

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