17-Year-Old Faces Criminal Charge in Watkins Mill Fight

Watkins Mill student accused of striking a classmate in the back of the head during the Sept. 21 altercation.


The post-football brawl last week at Watkins Mill High School has resulted in a criminal charge, according to police.

A 17-year-old Watkins Mill student has been charged as a juvenile with second-degree assault in the Sept. 21 altercation just off the Gaithersburg school’s campus.

Montgomery County police had received a complaint of a Watkins Mill student being struck in the back of the head as spectators left last Friday’s game between Watkins Mill and Clarksburg High School, which the Wolverines won 10-8 on a field goal with 10 seconds left on the clock.

Several large fights had broken out along Apple Ridge Road involving more than 30 students, witnesses said.

During the fracas, 15-year-old Janaya Richards was struck by one of 11 police cruisers that had been called in to back up the eight officers already on the scene. The Watkins Mill sophomore is in stable condition at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda, and four officers have been put on paid administrative leave pending the standard internal probe into the incident.

In the week since, investigators have struggled to get witness accounts, said Capt. Paul Starks, a police spokesperson.

Meanwhile, security has been bolstered tonight for Watkins Mill's homecoming game against Rockville High School.

"I am extremely disappointed that a Watkins Mill student was involved in what happened prior to the unfortunate accident with Janaya last Friday," Principal Scott Murphy wrote in an email to Patch.

"I am confident that appropriate action will be taken through the police investigation. Moving forward, we are fully prepared for a positive, safe homecoming game this evening for the vast majority of our students who do the right thing each and every day."

SAVEOURCHILDREN September 28, 2012 at 10:04 PM
So a couple of kids should be able to spoil it for the students who are doing the right things, and the teachers who deserve to be paid more @Barbara , I think Not. That's like saying crime is in the neighborhood, so let's plow the whole neighborhood down, We are all either part of the problem or part of the solution.. These kids need to be held Accountable, if they wish to behave as reckless adults, they should recieve the punishment of an adult.. all these slaps on the wrist, will only turn them into adults with worse behaviors.
bbb September 29, 2012 at 01:21 AM
saveourchildren u r right "These kids need to be held Accountable" and SO do the parents....this generation of kids hav gotten outta of hand because we keep makin excuses for them...we all were teenagers at one time another..i paid for my errors in school and my parent's backup the school 100 %...now the parent's want to blame the bus driver/teacher/counselors/principals etc EVERYBODY but them..lets start sending them to jail and make the parent's pay for the time police/schools etc had to spend trying to get everything under control and the girl's hospital bill's
Glass Half Full September 29, 2012 at 12:25 PM
Too many people blame the system for problems in our community & expect schools/government to fix it. Regardless of socioeconomic status, these problems start or are fueled by issues at home. People have been rich & poor since the beginning of time. The problem today is so many people use their socioeconomic status to protect kids from feeling the consequences of their own behavior & others use their status to excuse their kids poor behavior.
jnrentz1 October 03, 2012 at 12:36 PM
Well said.
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