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Seven students arrested in fights at NHS

COVINGTON — Seven students were arrested — and one pepper sprayed — for their involvement in two fights that broke out Monday at Newton High School, authorities said.

Newton County Sheriff’s Office Deputy Cortney Morrison said the first fight broke out in the cafeteria around 1 p.m. involving five students — four of whom were juveniles ages 15 and 16. The fifth student was 17-year-old Ahkeem Payne of 250 Creekview Blvd.

Morrison said the school resource officer responded and pepper sprayed one of the 15-year-olds involved who ignored repeated commands to stop fighting. The school resource officer was then able break up that fight and separate the students, she said.

“Within minutes another altercation broke out between Raheem Johnson and another juvenile,” Morrison said.

NCSO deputies were called to the school, but by the time they arrived, the second fight was broken up, Morrison said.

Sherri Davis-Viniard, public relations director for Newton County schools, said the students are facing disciplinary action.

“Fighting will not be tolerated on school property,” she said. “The students involved have been charged according to the disciplinary rules in the student handbook. They also face criminal charges.”

In addition to Payne, Johnson, 17, of 65 Gazebo Drive, and the five other juveniles were arrested and charged with felony obstruction of officers, affray and disruption of public school.