Video shows school officers attacked trying to break up fight

PHILADELPHIA -- Newly released cell phone video captured an attack on two veteran Northeast High School officers.

The incident occurred around 3:30 p.m. Monday on the corner of Cottman and Castor.

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Philadelphia Police Lt. John Stanford told Action News the officers observed two males assaulting a Northeast High School student.

"Those school officers intervened in attempting to stop the assault of the student, when they do so, the two offenders that are involved in this shift their focus onto the school police officers," Stanford said.

Witness Baher Alfroukh says he watched the whole thing unfold outside of his pizza shop.

"I tried to break up the fight, but there were too many guys. I went inside and called 911," Alfroukh said.

On Tuesday night, police released the cell phone video of the incident.

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Police release surveillance of officers being attacked in Northeast Philadelphia.

"It's very disturbing, you have adults that are not only about to assault students, but they also get into a fight with our school police officers," School District of Philadelphia spokesman Fernando Gallard said.

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As two school police officers quickly arrived to break up the fight, two unidentified adult men jumped in and allegedly started beating on the officers.

When it ended, the males ran away and the officers were left in need of medical assistance.

One officer suffered a broken jaw and lost some teeth; the other officer had some bruising after reportedly being punched in the face and pushed to the ground.

The district says neither officer was armed.

"We're going to work real closely with Northeast Detectives to get some witness statements and some other investigations going on to find them," Brenden Lee, the Executive Director of Philadelphia School Safety, said.

Gallard said the officers were doing their job.

"Their job is to walk the neighborhood when students are released from school," Gallard said.

Tonya Clark, a Northeast High parent, is not surprised by the afternoon brawl.

"It's horrible, but this is something that I've seen before," Clark said. "They do this all the time, all the time."

So far, no suspects have been identified by police.

Baher Alfroukh is hopeful that this case can be solved sometime soon.

"It is scary. It's a very quiet neighborhood," Alfroukh said.

Anyone with information is asked to contact police.
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