School helps notify police as dangerous fight spills over to neighborhood

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) – A fight in a north Jonesboro neighborhood that started at a school, ended with three people taken to the hospital and four people in custody.

Thursday, School officials talked about what lead to the phone call to police and how with the district helped officers to respond quickly.

"We had officers on the scene within under a minute of the initial call," said Sgt. Lyle Waterworth with the Jonesboro Police Department.

It was a response time that quickly extinguished a fight that could have been much worse, but didn't thanks to officials with the Jonesboro School District.

"If we have any indication that there could be a situation that could spill into the community, we notify them," said Jonesboro School Superintendent Dr. Kim Wilbanks.

It's a partnership that came into play Wednesday afternoon when Dr. Wilbanks caught wind of a situation among some female students.

"It was a very typical kind of conflict that you would see with high school students and apparently that conflict had escalated to involve adults," said Dr. Wilbanks.

It was through information from students and faculty that Dr. Wilbanks learned the fight which was scheduled to take place at the end of the school day off campus in the Parker Park area. The information was a green light to do exactly what officials should do and notify police. Sgt. Lyle Waterworth says the notification had the department ready for whatever might transpire.

"They knew the potential fight was going to happen. They patrolled the area a little harder," said Sgt. Waterworth.

Baseball bats and knocked over posts were all reminisce of what transpired in the North Jonesboro neighborhood. It was a brawl that could have turned into a much more dangerous situation.

"Because we had somebody there within a minute, it could be that we saved potential damaged to other property and to other persons," said Sgt. Waterworth.

Thursday, JHS Principal Dr. Mike Skelton took extra precautions on campus to keep any problems from filtering onto school property. He says they would rather be "pro-active than re-active"

"We made sure to station people throughout the day around other exits and entrances just to make sure there wasn't anything funny going on. We wanted to make sure there wasn't somebody letting somebody in or somebody trying to get on campus that shouldn't be here," said Skelton.

School officials say two of the girls involved in the incident are fairly new to the district. The district was aware of the issue between the girls, but no physical violence ever happened on school property.

At this time, disciplinary action has not been taken by the school district and no criminal charges have been filed, but that could change after further investigation.

According to Jonesboro Public Schools Superintendent, Dr. Kim Wilbanks, school officials notified Jonesboro Police of a possible fight, when JPD responded to a fight call at 111 Daybreak Drive in north Jonesboro.

JPD tells Region 8 News that a fight between several different people broke out in the parking lot of the Cedar Park apartment complex. "When we got here witnesses said that the fight had broken out amongst several individuals. During the course of the fight, ball bats and several sticks were used. Three people actually ended up being cut and multiple shots were fired. At this point, I don't think anyone was hit by the gunfire," says Jonesboro Police Lieutenant Rick Elliot.

JPD tells Region 8 News that three people who suffered minor knife wounds were taken to local hospitals with non-life threatening injuries.

Police have four people in custody at this time.

Region 8 news will bring you any new developments as soon as they become available.

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