THORNTON, Colo. (KDVR) — A Brighton teenager was assaulted on prom night. Not only was the high school senior left with injuries but was forced to temporarily pause his dreams of competitive dance.
For most high schoolers, prom is somewhat of a rite of passage that many look forward to, but John Granzin won’t be left with the best memories. The 17-year-old works at a restaurant and saved up money for months to “go big” on the suit, dinner, transportation and more. However, his experience was tainted after he was jumped at an after-party.
For Granzin “dance is life.” He has been dancing since he was 5 years old.
“Dance is everything to me,” Granzin said. “It’s just my sport.”
He and his dance team have been competing in state-wide competitions together since childhood. The seniors are about to graduate, which makes the Bravo Dance Competition in two weeks so special, but Granzin won’t be able to dance because of what unfolded on prom night.
Granzin is homeschooled but went to prom in Thornton last Saturday night with his dance team, which is primarily all females. The dance itself was a night to remember, but chaos unfolded at the after-party.
“Things just went south and then all of a sudden I’m beat up,” Granzin said.
What happened on prom night
The senior told FOX31 that he was standing in the corner with a friend when someone he didn’t know came up to him and said, “You trying to fight?” He said that boy abruptly threw him into the DJ table and he fell to the ground. Next, he remembers multiple people punching him in the head repeatedly.
He was bleeding and ran into another room and locked the door but said the boys chased him and tried to break down the door. Granzin said that’s when he had no choice but to jump out the window to escape. When he jumped, he said he landed on some rocks on his arm and was driven to the hospital.
FOX31 asked the teen what caused the fight. Granzin said he’d only seen one of the boys once and didn’t know anyone else, adding it may have had something to do with relationship issues and he was wrongly targeted.
The teen’s mother, Kelly Granzin, said he received a call from the doctor saying she needed to rush to the University of Colorado Hospital.
“It’s my biggest nightmare. It’s crushing, and when I saw him and our eyes met, he just kind of broke down in tears. It was really hard because I know he’s older now, but to me, it was just like seeing my little boy there,” she said. “He was devastated, and I was devastated for him and it’s my biggest nightmare that my kids get hurt. I try to protect them so much, but you just can’t.”
Granzin’s senior prom ended with him in the hospital with a concussion, black eye, bruised face and ears and a broken arm.
“I was devastated,” Granzin said. “I felt bad for my team too, because I know I just let everyone down too. It’s terrible.”
Help this dancer get to the national competition
Granzin’s bruises are slowly healing, and he’s now stuck in a cast for four to six weeks, robbed of dancing in his final competition. However, Bravo Competition officials heard about the assault and decided to transfer Granzin to the national dance competition in July.
Nationals are in Iowa, which means plane tickets, hotels and more. If you’d like to help send Granzin to the biggest competition of his life, click here for the GoFundMe account.
“It’s like a blessing in disguise because I lost out on this and now I have a bigger opportunity,” Granzin said.
By then, his cast will be off and he can put his best foot forward, ending high school dance on a high note.
Granzin said she is pressing charges against those responsible. Thornton Police say they have made no arrests in the case and are still investigating.