Student expelled for fight and possession of a knife

A South Whidbey High School student has been expelled for fighting and allegedly having a knife in his possession.

The fight occurred last week between two students in the South Whidbey Community Park next to the high school.

Blows were exchanged, said school Principal Mike Johnson, and then, according to some teen witnesses, one of the students displayed a knife. No one was injured.

The boys had apparently left school grounds during a lunch break to settle a week-old dispute.

Johnson said it doesn't appear the student attempted to use the knife. However, school administrators reported the incident to the Island County Sheriff's Office Tuesday.

Jan Smith, spokeswoman for the sheriff's office, said the incident may not result in any charges. None have been filed, nor has anyone involved lodged a complaint.

"The incident was reported as a rumor to our office, and a deputy was sent to gather information," she said. "It is a concern, and important that we were made aware of the situation in case of future problems."

School administrators learned from students that the incident occurred. Also, the students in question did not return to class the day of the fight, something Johnson said sparked a school investigation.

Though the incident occurred off campus, Johnson said the school needed to take action. The student who possessed the knife was expelled.

"We felt that because of the nature of the incident -- possible possession of a weapon -- and the proximity to the school, we had a responsibility to react with swift and appropriate action."

"We have zero tolerance for violence and for weapons. I believe we have a safe campus," Johnson said.

The school's investigation included talking to students who witnessed the fight. Parents of both students were contacted and have met with school administrators.

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