A Capitol Hill high school was locked down yesterday afternoon as police responded to reports that a former student and suspected gang member had assaulted several peers and had allegedly pulled a gun on one student.
Students from Nova High school and the World School, a multilingual school for newly arrived immigrant and refugee students that shares space with Nova, were locked into the building at around 2:30 p.m. yesterday, after teens reported seeing a bloody, brass-knuckle-fueled fight between at least four high school students on the schools' playfield.
"A 14-year-old student who used to go to the World School had basically been kicked out and was going to Chief Sealth school, but he wanted to be re-admitted and the principal had turned down his request," confirms Teresa Whipple, a spokeswoman for SPS. "He’d apparently shown up at the school to confront some students. He said they were spreading rumors that were keeping him out of the school."
As is common with many a teenage confrontation, the fight was reportedly sparked by shit talking on Facebook.
The police report states that the former World School student and an older friend approached three students on the playfield "and started asking [one of them] why he was talking about him on face book [sic]." Then the suspect "started hitting [the victim] with brass knuckles he had put on." The victim dropped to the ground.
When another student tried to assist the victim, the suspect, who'd reportedly donned a dark leather glove over the brass knuckles, "hit him in the mouth with the brass knuckles and then pulled a handgun from his pocket and put it up against the right side of [one of the student's] head," the police report states.
The victim told police he was able to force the handgun out of the suspect's hand, but the suspect "picked the gun up from the ground and started to run from the soccer field," the report explains. The suspect and his friend "stated they were part of a gang... located out of Salvador" and allegedly threatened to return to the school with more people.
The three victims declined medical attention. A search failed to unearth the suspects or a firearm. Because of the district's no weapons policy, "the 14-year-old has been long-term expelled from Sealth until the police investigation is complete and we understand what his role was," Whipple says. "We won’t make any final decisions until that’s done."