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UPDATE: Mass Fighting at Kealakehe High Leads to 8 Arrests

December 6, 2012, 4:50 PM HST
* Updated December 7, 8:53 AM
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Fights among students at Kealakehe High School the past two days have resulted in eight arrests and the cancellation of all classes Friday.

A parent of a student at the Kailua-Kona school told Big Island Now that 60 or more students were involved in a melee Wednesday, though police later said that number was 20 to 30. The parent said approximately a dozen police officers responded to the campus.

Seven male students and one female student were charged with disorderly conduct and released. No one required medical attention, according to police.

Donalyn Dela Cruz, spokeswoman for the state Department of Education, could not confirm the number of students involved but did say that the school was put on lockdown at about 1 p.m.

The lockdown meant that students were confined to classrooms.

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Dela Cruz said she did not know what prompted the fighting.

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Another fight that broke out today resulted in students being released early, beginning at 2:30 p.m., about 45 minutes earlier than usual, and in increments as buses arrived.

She said the school decided to cancel classes tomorrow to give teachers and staff an opportunity to meet with police and consider how to diffuse the situation.

“The reason for the closure is ensure the safety of the school,” she said.

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