ENGLEWOOD, N.J. (CBSNewYork) – A wild brawl full of students punching, pushing and screaming for help was all caught on camera.
Now there’s a criminal investigation and a dozen arrests.READ MORE: Mayor De Blasio Announces Vaccine Mandate For All New York City Municipal Workers, Including First Responders
The video shows Dwight Morrow High School students screaming loudly while their fists are flying. Multiple students were punched and pushed, slammed into walls and tables, battling it out in the middle of the cafeteria during lunch hour.
“I heard a lot of yelling, punch noises, it was really scary,” said witness Emily Duque. “I was like, ‘Why is this happening?'”
She took the cell phone video when the fight broke out Tuesday afternoon around 1 p.m.
“All females were yelling and trying to help the boys,” Duque said. “I seen multiple security running and trying to grab all the students.”
Police were called to help, saying the chaos began with words then turned physical between two rival groups. One student injured his eye and was treated on scene by emergency workers.READ MORE: White House Details Plans To Vaccinate 28 Million Children Ages 5-11
“They chose the wrong thing to do,” said Dwight Morrow HS senior Elieser Rodriguez. “It was just bad for everybody… We’re here to get our work done and that’s it. We’re not a school where we cause violence.”
So far, a dozen student are facing criminal charges. Eleven of them are charged with failing to disperse. One is charged with trespassing and disorderly conduct.
The superintendent says the district has 24 highly trained security guards across its six schools. Since the brawl, the high school has added protection.
“Security it literally everywhere. We have police officers all over campus,” Rodriguez said.
“They’ve been walking around school, making sure every student isn’t just hanging around,” Duque said.
Englewood Mayor Michael Wildes hopes to permanently place a police officer in each school to prevent these kinds of incidents.MORE NEWS: Employee Stabbed To Death At East Harlem Deli
“The security is doing as good of a job as they are able to do, and we have to do better,” said Wildes. “This kind of conduct is not to be tolerated.”