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He Killed His Classmate With a Single Punch, but There's a Simple Reason Why He Isn't Facing Criminal Charges

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"Walk away."

Image via KETV-TV

The other guy started it — and wound up dead.

After a fistfight at Abraham Lincoln High School in Council Bluffs, Iowa, 17-year-old Dakota Escritt died last Saturday, but the classmate whose punch knocked him fatally to the ground won't face criminal charges, KETV-TV reported, because surveillance video shows Dakota starting the fight.

Image via KETV-TV Image via KETV-TV

Dakota pushed sixteen-year-old Greg Teer, video shows, and the teens both swung at one another until Greg's punch connected, knocking Dakota onto the cafeteria's tile floor.

"There's no question in my mind that Dakota was the initial physical aggressor," said Pottawattamie County Attorney Matt Wilber on Wednesday.

Dakota Escritt. (Image via KETV-TV) Dakota Escritt. (Image via KETV-TV)

The pair of teens had apparently exchanged a profanity-laced thread of Facebook messages prior to the fight, KETV reported, and Wilber determined that Greg has used reasonable force to defend himself in the fatal fight.

Notably, it wasn't Greg's punch that killed Dakota; It was the teen hitting his head on the hard tile floor that proved fatal.

For his part, Greg expressed sorrow for his classmate's death, and said he'd learned something from the ordeal.

"Fighting is not the answer," he told KETV. "Walk away."

Image via KETV-TV Greg Teer. (Image via KETV-TV)

KETV reported that Greg's attorney is trying to get the teen readmitted to Abraham Lincoln High School.

Dakota's father, Josh Escritt, described the pain of losing his child.

"My heart is ripped out," the father told KETV. "I've been through a lot in life and I never thought, I thought I'd been through the worst feeling and the worst pain inside. And no. Nothing compares to losing your own kid."

Follow Zach Noble (@thezachnoble) on Twitter

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