By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Swarm of officers respond to CHS fight
A swarm of law enforcement officers descended on Ceres High School during Thursday's lunch period after a large crowd of students gathered for a fight.

"It was huge," said Ceres Police Chief Art deWerk. "I am convinced that had we had a large response that things were going to get worse."

Ceres Police responded with the California Highway Patrol and Sheriff's deputies provided backup.

"It was not a riot," said Assistant Superintendent Jay Simmonds.

The incident lasted about 10 to 15 minutes, said deWerk, and broke out in the quad area of the CHS campus at approximately 12:10 p.m. during the lunch break.

Simmonds said that two students got into a fight at lunch and that a large bunch of students "swarmed around to watch." The School Resource Officer got into the middle of it in an attempt to stop it and one of the kids starting the fight "put up a stink."

The SRO called for backup but authorities had a misunderstanding about the severity of the situation, said Simmonds. He saw at least eight police cars when he arrived.

"They thought it was a more serious situation. It was a misunderstanding. We totally appreciate the response but it was not an out-of-control situation. I'd rather have more than less."

Simmonds said the incident was not gang related but said one of the participants has gang affiliations.

"It sounded like it was a personal issue," he said.

The two students were being interviewed Thursday afternoon and are up for expulsion, said Simmonds.

The only injuries were scratches, he said.