MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) — Angry parents are demanding action after they say at least five students were handcuffed at a Middle Tennessee elementary school for not stopping an off-campus fight.
The complaints were aired Sunday at First Baptist Church in Murfreesboro, where The Daily News Journal (http://on.dnj.com/1SplyEc) reports more than 150 people gathered for a community meeting over Friday's incident at Hobgood Elementary School. The Rev. James McCarroll said the students were detained and later released from a juvenile center.
Zacchaeus Crawford, who said three of his children were handcuffed at the school, called the actions "nonsense in the fullest definition."
"There are innocent kids that have been arrested that have been entered in a system they have no business in," Crawford said.
Murfreesboro Police Chief Karl Durr and City Manager Rob Lyons attended the meeting.
Durr said he would begin reviewing the situation Monday. "Out of this, we want to learn and make things better so they don't happen again," Durr said.
"If something needs to be corrected, it will be," Lyons told the crowd.
Director of Schools Linda Gilbert did not respond to the newspaper's request for comment over the weekend.
Policies for detaining students in Tennessee are made at the local police level, said Maggi Duncan, executive director of the Tennessee Association of Chiefs of Police.
The Rev. Tolbert Randolph, who is pastor at Providence Baptist Church, asked officials to dismiss the charges.
"I'm asking in good faith for you to go to the arresting officers and tell them to drop it," he told them.