Student attacks investigated in Lewiston

LEWISTON — A pair of local middle school students were sent to the hospital Wednesday after they were jumped and beaten by a larger group of youths while walking to the Lewiston High School track, police said Thursday.

By Thursday afternoon, three students had been charged in the attack. A fourth, not a student, was charged after going to Lewiston Middle School on Thursday as part of the ongoing confrontation between two groups of students.

Police said a series of fights involving students this spring culminated Wednesday afternoon when the two students were badly beaten in the area of Marcotte Park, a short distance from the school track. The victims were examined at the hospital and released, according to a source familiar with the incident.
 
Lewiston Deputy Police Chief James Minkowsky said his officers would increase patrols between the middle and high schools, where groups of kids hang out.
 
Minkowsky confirmed that the attackers were described as Somali students.
 
He said there were further problems at the school Thursday, possibly stemming from the attack a day earlier. Lewiston's School Resource Officer Corey Jacques was investigating.
 
One source familiar with both groups of students said those in the smaller group might have started the fight. Police said motives for the attack were not clear.
 
Minkowsky said all of the students involved are minors and would not be identified. More charges are likely, he said.
 
"It is being addressed with the typical sensitivity we apply to all minors, but handled the same way we investigate any other criminal case," the deputy chief said. "If we discover there are overtones stemming from any other issues, this will be addressed as well."
 

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Comments

DONALD FERLAND's picture

I don't believe it matters

I don't believe it matters what started the fight. My main concern would be what is going on with our children today that there is so much discourse in their lives and since when did fighting become the answer to the problem. Maybe parents should start being more involved with their children and start teaching them some good old fashioned morals and ways of coping without resulting in throwing punches. Since this seems to be an ongoing issue in our schools then maybe parents need the wake up call. Educators are there to educate our children not to baby sit them. If our children cannot be responsible enough to stay out of fights then maybe parents need to be picking their children up from school and hiring baby sitters for them regardless of how old they actually are.

 's picture

what makes you think that the

what makes you think that the parents are any better? many of lewiston's kids are born into violence and poverty with parents who care more about how much assistance the kid is worth down at dhhs then the kid him/herself. sad but true. parents with alcohol and drug problems could care less about hiring babysitters or supervising their own kids. you are absolutely correct that educators are not babysitters, but unfortunately that responsibility is being thrust on them weather they can handle it or not. and you are beyond correct that parents need to start being more involved with their children. it's just not that simple.
as for the "attackers being somoli", there really should be some kind of a "cooling off" program between refugee camps and coming here, where they learn how to act. maybe some "parenting in the usa" classes would help, where they'd be taught by other immigrants how to help their children cope with the change in environment. here, i assume that those "attackers" are new arrivals from the camps where boys roam in packs with little parental oversight, and may be coming with single mothers with no cultural authority.
throw those two groups in together and watch what happens. basically, parents regardless of culture or income level need to supervise and parent their kids in order to prevent this type of thing from occurring.

DONALD FERLAND's picture

My son has been bullied by

My son has been bullied by Somali children. He has even been beaten up by them. However, the answer is not fighting them with fists. As far as parents not caring except for how much assistance their child is worth...I must disagree with you. It is another case of stereotyping because people are poor. Many of the middle class parents are working too hard to be a major factor in their child's life. And I would wager that upper class parents are also too busy doing what they do to be a major factor in their child's life. It is time to get away from the race card, the immigrant card, the discrimination card, and put the blame where it belongs. As parents we have failed to instill in our children good old fashioned values. While some parents are an integral part of the children's lives there are more who are not regardless of their economic situation.

As far as parenting in the USA classes, who are we to tell them how to parent their children. If they were to tell us to start parenting as they do we would all throw a fit. The point is PARENTS NEED TO PARENT, we need to instill values in our children and be responsible adults. There is an entire generation of children who think they were born with a silver spoon in their mouths and they need to be brought back in line. As a parent you can be sure I "RAISE" my children and not just allow them to grow up as they want.

 's picture

what makes you think that the

what makes you think that the parents are any better? many of lewiston's kids are born into violence and poverty with parents who care more about how much assistance the kid is worth down at dhhs then the kid him/herself. sad but true. parents with alcohol and drug problems could care less about hiring babysitters or supervising their own kids. you are absolutely correct that educators are not babysitters, but unfortunately that responsibility is being thrust on them weather they can handle it or not. and you are beyond correct that parents need to start being more involved with their children. it's just not that simple.
as for the "attackers being somoli", there really should be some kind of a "cooling off" program between refugee camps and coming here, where they learn how to act. maybe some "parenting in the usa" classes would help, where they'd be taught by other immigrants how to help their children cope with the change in environment. here, i assume that those "attackers" are new arrivals from the camps where boys roam in packs with little parental oversight, and may be coming with single mothers with no cultural authority.
throw those two groups in together and watch what happens. basically, parents regardless of culture or income level need to supervise and parent their kids in order to prevent this type of thing from occurring.

KATHY WILLIAMSON's picture

If you yell racial slurs at

If you yell racial slurs at someone, you might just get punched in the face. .

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

I agree with the outcome you

I agree with the outcome you suggest, but do you know for fact that is what happened?

KATHY WILLIAMSON's picture

The story hints at it, but

The story hints at it, but no, I don't know. I just felt like the discussion should be balanced. You are right, I should have qualified that comment. Good catch.

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Actually, I wasn't trying to

Actually, I wasn't trying to trap you, but merely seeking information. I didn't know that particular fact, either.

KATHY WILLIAMSON's picture

Thank you Paul.

Thank you Paul.

KATHY WILLIAMSON's picture

Thank you Paul.

Thank you Paul.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Nice try, but the racial angle won't cut it

This has been going on since long before the Somalis got here. My daughter transferred From Lewiston to EL when she was in tenth grade. Due mostly to the immature actions of several groups of kids. She found the same problem at EL and eventually just graduated a year early and joined the Army. This was ten or eleven years ago. Nothings going stop it.

ERNEST LABBE's picture

Perhaps

Perhaps you didn't understand my comment. A ouple of years ago a whire kid threw a ham sandwich on a table occupied by Somali students. That was a hate crime. I was reversing the roles here, or can nobody but white people committ hate crimes? It had nothing to do with rivelry between EL nd LHS.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

Ernest

I guess you didn't understand my comment. What I meant was that these skirmishes have been going on long before the Somalis arrived. It has nothing to do with EL verses Lewiston, it just that this activity went on at both schools. Its nothing new. Hell this stuff went on in my own high school and that was thirty five years ago. I wish there was an easy answer to this but there isn't. Maybe I'm wrong, but when did the Somalis enter into this situation in the first place.

FRANK EARLEY's picture

I stand corrected.

The attackers were Somali, however would it have been just fine if everyone was white. No, it makes no difference black or white. Not every confrontation between them means racial conflict. When I was in high school, I belonged to a group of other students, we all rode Harley Davidson. We didn't wear colors or pick fights with anyone, we just had a love for Harley s. Unfortunately that one distinction that set us apart from everyone else made us trouble makers. I had to work two jobs just to afford my bike. Still, if one of us got into a fight with anyone else say in the cafeteria, it was always " one of the bikers attacked so and so." Even when the "biker" was attacked. And that happened quite a bit. I think it was quite racial for the Sun Journal to even print that line about who attacked who. I guess unless you can put a title to at least one side of the skirmish its not news worthy, actually it isn't anyway. But hell we got to keep it going....

Heather Sullivan's picture

I completely agree with you

I completely agree with you Frank. My parents owned a bar and just because people rode in on their motorcycles, we were deemed a "biker bar"....can never judge a book by its cover. Many people ended up walking through the doors and always came back because we had a great atmosphere and no fights. We never tolerated it. Plain and simple.

Whatever caused this fight, I am sure that charges will be filed. There is no need for all of this to go on. It is funny how quick a Somali is quick to point the finger at someone else when it is them that is causing the primary issue. I say this as matter of fact because my friend's daughter had many run ins with them at school, one time in particular where a somali girl complained that my friend's daughter wouldn't let her listen to her ipod, claiming it was hers when it really wasn't.....or my mother got rear-ended by a somali and there was another somali that was walking on the side of the street that jumped into the other van and then claimed that he 'injured his neck'. They have earned a name and after having as many issues with them in the past, they all just seem to be the same, unless proven otherwise.

GARY SAVARD's picture

Good question Ernest. I

Good question Ernest. I would guess based on past history however that after a bunch of behind the scenes arrangements, this will all be swept away. From what I hear "incidents" of this general nature occur quite frequently at the middle and high schools.

ERNEST LABBE's picture

If the

If the attackers are found to be Somali students, and the ones attacked are not Somali's does it become a hate crime?

PAUL ST JEAN's picture

Or, a 'racially fueled'

Or, a 'racially fueled' incident. We can't overlook that one. It certainly would be if the attackers were white.

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