WEST BEND (WITI) -- Dozens of West Bend High School students are expected to be charged with disorderly conduct or issued municipal citations for their alleged role in a protest that turned ugly inside the school on Thursday morning, November 20th.
On that morning, officers from the West Bend Police Department and deputies from the Washington County Sheriff’s Office responded and encountered a number of students running through the halls, yelling, and ripping material off of the walls. Officials say the students that were causing the disturbance were quickly ushered into the high school gym and detained there until the parents of those students could be notified to pick their child up from the school. No students or school staff members were injured.
"There was a whole hoard of people just wandering, like literally every hallway like pushing things," said 10th grader, Allison Webb.
Alison Webb spoke with FOX6 News just after the incident. School officials later suspended her for 3 days. FOX6 News attempted to follow up with her Friday evening, but she's worried she will face more punishment if she speaks with us again. Her mother filled FOX6 News in instead.
"She did nothing other than walking the halls but yet she's grouped with this group of students who were plugging sinks and flipping tables and ripping things off the wall," said Carol Webb.
Carol says her daughter was curious about the new hall pass policy, which is why she attended the meeting. She also says Allison recorded video of the ensuing riot, intending to share it with the school district. She says Allison did not participate in the chaos and eventually returned to her classroom. But she later served a 3-day suspension and is also getting a disorderly conduct warning from the police.
"It's not right and I'm not going to let it be right because you know I've appealed this -- I want this off her record," said Carol.
46 other students are facing stiffer penalties. Some are being charged with disorderly conduct. Others are getting citations. Those citations come with a price tag close to $400.
Carol Webb thinks the guilty are getting what they deserve.
"I feel that the district handled it how they should have with the people who actually started this whole thing. I don't like how it was handled with the other students who were just simply walking the halls," Carol said.
FOX6 News spoke with the superintendent and he says next week they'll be recommending to the board that two students face expulsion for their behavior.
In the investigation, the West Bend Police Department reviewed video, interviewed administrators and staff from the high school, and interviewed 137 students. The students that were interviewed by police were observed in the cafeteria and hallways during the disturbance. This was also after administrators ordered all students several times to report to their respective classrooms.
The West Bend Police Department will be taking the following action against the 46 students.
Numerous other students that were in the cafeteria and hallways during the disturbance were warned by police and were given suspensions or other sanctions by the West Bend School District.