Administrators at Auburn High School Freshman Campus, where a student was stabbed Monday, opted not to search 599 students’ belongings Tuesday.
Reversing an earlier decision, administrators at Auburn High School Freshman Campus opted not to search students’ belongings Tuesday in light of a Monday stabbing in the school’s parking lot.
Instead, they asked the school’s 599 students to stash their backpacks, coats and other possessions in their lockers as a safety precaution, taking only notebooks, pencils and school IDs to class with them, Auburn High School Principal Richard Jancek said.
The decision not to search came under advice from their attorney, Jancek said, though he was unsure of the basis for the change.
School Board lawyer Steve Katz declined to explain the rationale behind the reversal.
“We received that directive, and we did what we were told,” Jancek said.
As promised, extra police were on hand Tuesday, patrolling after a 14-year-old boy allegedly stabbed another 14-year-old boy in the stomach Monday after school. The boy suffered serious injuries but remained in stable condition Tuesday, police officials said.
The alleged assailant, arrested four hours after the attack at his home, faces aggravated battery and unlawful possession of a weapon on school grounds, Deputy Police Chief Greg Lindmark said. Authorities won’t release the boy’s name because he is a juvenile protected by state privacy laws.
Cause of fight determined
“We have been able to determine what started the fight,” Lindmark said. “At this stage in the investigation, I don’t want to say what it is.”
Lindmark said the attack was not gang-related and not likely to stir retaliation. Still, four police officers were on hand at the school Tuesday, compared with the lone officer who typically patrols, Jancek said. Teachers also assisted in the safety effort, keeping traffic flowing in hallways and helping students gather their belongings.
“We just asked them to step up their presence, talk with students, continue building those relationships and engaging in the classroom climate,” Jancek said. “Not that we’re taking the entire day to discuss the incident, but we’re at least allowing the students to vent a little bit.”
Jancek was unsure how long the additional officers would stay or how long other safety precautions would be in place.
Staff writer Sadie Gurman can be reached at 815-987-1389 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.