Statement from Dr. Kevin Whitaker & Paul Abbott
Dr. Kevin Whitaker, JPS Superintendent of Schools and Paul Abbott, President of the Jamestown Board of Education, would like to clarify to the community the events that occurred at Jamestown High School on Tuesday.
“Contrary to a local media report and parent interview, there was no stabbing and no weapons used during the altercation that took place in the Jamestown High School cafeteria,” said Dr. Kevin Whitaker. “The district’s school resource officer and a school safety officer responded immediately and were able to gain control of the situation. Out of an abundance of caution, additional law enforcement presence was requested. During this time, JHS administration made the decision to put the school into a hold in place and school operations returned to normal as soon as possible.”
Whitaker continued: “We acknowledge that the sudden heavy police presence may have caused alarm and concern about the safety of students. While fighting is never tolerated, we want to be clear that this incident did not involve weapons of any kind. We respectfully ask those who may choose to comment on the incident do so responsibly so as to avoid the spread of fear and misinformation. We are grateful to our partners in law enforcement for their swift response and their partnership in addressing this situation. And we are appreciative of the efforts of our administrators and staff who intervened and helped to resolve the situation very quickly.”
“I want to first compliment our school resource officer and school security staff in their handling of today’s incident,” said Abbott, a retired Lieutenant and Investigative Commander of the Jamestown Police Department. “It is always regrettable when tempers flare, however it is a comfort to know that we have people responding quickly and professionally to calm the situation and diffuse the situation as best as they can. I am aware that some incorrect information has been circulating on social media.We understand the community's interest if there is an event at the school, but we would ask for patience so that we can put out a statement that is responsible and accurate as opposed to rapid. Factual is better than fast.”