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California High School Brawl: 4 Injured In Racially Motivated 30-Student Fight

AP/The Huffington Post   First Posted: 03/ 7/2012 5:08 pm Updated: 03/ 7/2012 7:27 pm

CARSON, Calif. -- Dozens of students battled each other at a California high school Wednesday in a racially motivated brawl between black and Latino students that left four injured and two under arrest, authorities said.

At least 30 students traded punches and kicks in a series of fights that erupted in a Carson High School courtyard during the 10 a.m. recess, said Monica Carazo, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles Unified School District.

School police and Los Angeles County sheriff's deputies quelled the violence. Four students were sent to the hospital for treatment, but Carazo did not immediately know their conditions or the extent of their injuries.

Two students were arrested on suspicion of assault, while another three were taken into custody. Seven other students were issued citations for fighting.

Carazo says the brawl was racially motivated. According to Los Angeles' CBS2, the fight was more specifically between black football players and a Mexican tagging crew at the school. The Daily Breeze, however, is reporting that the student group many news outlets has identified as black is Samoan.

Students involved in the fight were reportedly kicking, punching, stomping and using skateboards. One student told the Daily Breeze that his Latino friend was left shaking on the ground after being kicked.

"He was calling my name, and was like, 'I can't breathe, I can't breathe,'" the student said.

The school was placed on modified lockdown, with students confined to classrooms except for lunch and to use restrooms.

The school has more than 3,000 students, about half of them Latino. There also is a large black population.

Los Angeles school police and the county Sheriff's Department are investigating.

Racial tensions in the nation's second-largest school district occasionally have led to school brawls. In 2005, as many as 100 students scuffled at Jefferson High School in South Los Angeles, leading to several arrests and injuries. Several other fights involving dozens of students have been reported at the school and other campuses.

CLARIFICATION: An earlier version of this article stated that the brawl was between black and Latino students. The categorization of one involved group's ethnicity is being reported differently as either black or Samoan. This story has been updated to reflect that discrepancy.

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