RIVERDALE – Half a dozen people were detained for questioning in connection with a dispute in the woods outside of Parkdale High School, fewer than 24 hours after a student was shot outside of Oxon Hill High School.
At about 1:30 p.m. the Prince George’s County Police Department (PGPD) started receiving notice from individuals inside Parkdale that a “group of people were gathering in the wood line outside of school property,” said PGPD Police Chief Hank Stawinski.
As officers were in route to the high school to respond to the report when a dispute allegedly began within the group. One male was harmed in the dispute and was transported to the local hospital where they are in serious, but stable condition and receiving medical attention.
“We cannot at this point confirm that these are students of Parkdale High School,” Stawinski said. “We cannot at this point confirm that.”
PGPD placed “more than half a dozen individuals” into custody for questioning in regards to the altercation. Stawinski believes the communication between the school and the police during the gathering of group helped the police prevent the situation from becoming worse.
“We believe we were able to prevent this from becoming worse and prevent further violence from happening,” he said.
As the investigation is ongoing, the police chief said he does not yet know if or what kind of weapon was involved or how the dispute started, but assured the community that as soon as he knows the details he will share them.
“What the kids are saying and what I’m going to tell the public when I have facts are two different things,” he said, addressing questions about possible gang-related violence. “All of that is subject to verification. We’re not even an hour-and-a-half into this and my detective, who would know, can’t confirm any of that yet.”
There was extra police presence at Oxon Hill High School Tuesday morning, after the shooting of a 17-year-old student in the school's parking lot Monday night.
According to Prince George's County Police, a student was allegedly arguing with someone inside a car in the school’s parking lot just after 5 p.m. when he was shot in the chest.
“The student was able to exit the vehicle and run into the school for help,” said Cpl. Lamar Robinson, spokesperson for Prince George's County Police Department.
The student was transported to a trauma center and was reported in critical but stable condition. He was released from the hospital several hours later and school officials said the student is looking forward to returning to school.
However, the alleged suspects fled the scene after the shooting and police said it was unclear if the alleged shooter was also a student. Police do not believe this was a random act and said they would review video to see if the incident was captured on the school's security cameras.
“This is a place of learning. This is supposed to be a safe place,” Robinson said. “We want to keep it a safe place. It's very disheartening to see a shooting happen on school grounds.”
Police announced the arrest and charging of two teenagers in connection with the non-fatal shooting Tuesday afternoon, shortly before incident at Parkdale. Seventeen-year-old Zanaya Bryant and 18-year-old Anthony Hollingsworth, both from Clinton and alleged acquaintances of the victim, have been charged as adults with attempted murder and “related charges.”
“That was not random. That is not a product of violence in the school. That was a number of acquaintances having a dispute in the parking lot of Oxon Hill High School late in the day,” Stawinski said.
Police are still searching for one additional person in connection with the shooting.
Just four weeks ago a student was sent to the hospital after an altercation in the hallway of Central High School that resulted in a stabbing.
Police arrested Edwin Aguilar Martinez, 19, of Seat Pleasant in connection with the stabbing. He is facing multiple charges, including a weapons charge, two counts of attempted murder and two counts of assault, police said.