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7 NHS students arrested after fights
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Seven students were arrested and face felony charges in connection with fighting at Newton High School Monday.

Newton County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Cortney Morrison said deputies were dispatched to the high school during lunch hours after receiving reports of five juveniles and two other students fighting.

Morrison said the seven students involved were charged with felony obstruction of officers as well as affray and disruption of public schools. The two adults charged were Ahkeem Payne, 17, and Raheem Johnson, 17.

According to Morrison, there were two fights within minutes of each other.

She said the first fight started in the cafeteria with a verbal altercation between four juveniles and Payne. Morrison said the fight moved to the common area and students were detained, but then another fight broke out between Johnson and a juvenile.

“Additional road units were called to the school as a safety precaution because of the simple fact that we didn’t know if there were going to be more fights because we did have two within the span of a few minutes,” Morrison said. “We didn’t know if we were going to have a third.”

Morrison said one of the juveniles was pepper-sprayed because he was given lawful commands from a law enforcement officer to stop, but refused to do so. She said he was not injured, but was detained.

“As for why they were fighting, that’s still under investigation,” Morrison said.

Sherri Davis-Viniard, NCSS director of public relations, said in addition to criminal charges, the students will face student disciplinary action.

“We do not tolerate fighting on (a) school campus,” Davis-Viniard said. “All of the students involved will be disciplined according to the rules in the student handbook.”