(PALM COAST, Fla.) — Eleven students have been arrested following a massive high school brawl that took place in the middle of the school day.
The incident occurred at Matanzas High School in Palm Coast, Florida — some 90 miles north of Orlando — when two school resource officers responded to a disturbance in a hallway of the high school at approximately 1 p.m. on Monday, according to a statement released from Flagler County Sheriff’s Office.
All of the schools in Flagler County have at least two school resource deputies assigned to each campus and the two officers “immediately assisted teachers and administrators in attempting to break up the fight and disperse the crowd of on-lookers,” police said.
“During the fight, a female student pushed (a deputy) so they could attack another student,” authorities said in their statement describing the situation. “At the same time, (another deputy) was working to control the situation and observed a male student run into the altercation. Deputy Landi then observed the student charging at a school staff member while swinging his arms, ultimately punching the staff member in the shoulder … At the same time, another school administrator was attempting to escort a student away from the fight, when another male student ran up to the administrator and grabbed them. The student then battered the administrator before being taken to the Dean’s Office.”
In total, 11 students were arrested, three of which with felony charges of Resisting a Law Enforcement Officer with Violence and Battery on a School Official. The other eight students had affidavits filed with the State Attorney’s Office recommending charges to be filed against them for misdemeanor offenses, police said.
“The lack of respect demonstrated by these students is simply shameful,” said Flagler County Sheriff Rick Staly. “But actions have consequences. Parents, be the Sheriff in your home and teach your kids the importance of respecting teachers, staff, and deputies. Teach them how to handle disagreements and that fighting only leads to more violence. We have a zero-tolerance policy for violence at schools, and you will be arrested. I also commend our School Resource Deputies and the Matanzas High School staff for quickly getting a very volatile situation under control before anyone was seriously hurt.”
Flagler Schools Superintendent LaShakia Moore added, “I agree with what our Sheriff has said in the past; this type of behavior is not to be tolerated by anyone. That said, these actions are not indicative of the thousands of students who come to our campuses each and every day to learn. There are so many students, teachers, administrators, and staff who work every day to promote and celebrate a positive school culture at their schools. This is an opportunity for our parents and guardians to reinforce the good choices their children decide to make and remind them why it is important to be successful in life.”
Parents have since been notified of the incident by Matanzas High School staff and an investigation into the cause of the altercation is underway.
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