NBC 10 I-Team: Providence student pistol whipped at high school by intruders
The Juanita Sanchez High School in Providence has cameras at every doorway and that technology might help identifying two male teenagers who walked inside Wednesday and pistol whipped a student.
The teenage intruders got in through a side door near the custodian office, which was opened by a female student, according a police report. The two black teens were identified by witnesses as being about 5 feet 8 inches tall and between 16 and 18 years old.
Superintendent of Schools Christopher Maher said the building was in lockdown for short period of time.
“The individuals were in and out of the building very quickly under three minutes,” he said.
A police report of the incident obtained by the NBC 10 I-Team said the two intruders approached 18-year old student Edgar Matos in the hallway and hit him in the head with a black hand gun.
Matos said the teens demanded he turn over anything in his pockets, but he refused to give up his cell phone and fought back. After they hit him, they then ran out of the school, he said.
Matos refused an ambulance and was treated by the school nurse with a cut to his forehead.
Maher told the NBC 10 I-Team police responded quickly and the female student who let the intruders in went with police for questioning.
“Look, I'm a father. It's very worrisome,” said Maher, who was quick to reassure parents and students. “My message is we have safe buildings but only as safe as we keep them. If we let intruders into our buildings, then we are making our schools unsafe and the safety and security of our schools are paramount.”
School officials said the high school typically has a school resource/police officer, but that officer was not present Wednesday.
Witnesses described the teen with the gun as wearing a black hoodie sweatshirt under a red vest with black pants and white sneakers. The other teen was wearing a black hooded jacket, tan pants, and white sneakers.
Anyone with information on their whereabouts is asked to contact police.