24 Arrests Made In New Jersey School Melee

CAMDEN, N.J. – An additional five students were charged for their roles in a Feb. 26 brawl that led to a school shut down.

The five teenage boys were charged with inciting a riot at Camden High School. These latest arrests add to the 19 already made on charges of inciting a riot, simple assault, aggravated assault and resisting arrest. Police reviewed security videotapes to aid in their investigation.

The melee took place on the Camden High campus when an altercation in the cafeteria escalated to the second floor where other fights broke out. Police and school security guards locked the campus down, dismissed the students and closed the school for the day.

Some students say that police and security guards used excessive force, escalating the situation. Students pointed out the use of pepper spray, Tasers and nightsticks as particularly inflammatory. However, Tasers are not allowed to be used by law enforcement officers in New Jersey, raising doubts of the students’ allegations.

The fights are believed to have stemmed from arguments started over the previous weekend. While gang activity has not officially been connected to the incident, the school uniform incorporates colors representing two prevalent local gangs.

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