Girard College Students Accosted...
- Girard College Students Accosted at Gunpoint
No One Hurt, But School Implements Safety Plan
By Nathaniel Johnson
North Philadelphia-- Two eighth grade students who
attend Girard College were allegedly accosted, at
gunpoint on Friday, February 17th. The incident took
place near Ridge Avenue as the students waited for the
bus. The unidentified students were on the way home
for the weekend from the prestigious walled school
near 20th and Girard.
The students were not injured, but shook up, and
followed school instructions about this type of
incident and returned immediately to the safety of the
school. Campus Patrol alerted Philadelphia Police and
an investigation was launched into the incident.
According to the Office of the President of Girard
College "the students returned to school and were
taken to the local police station..." A letter was
issued to all faculty and staff to alert them to the
situation and remind them of the seriousness of
stressing safety to the children. President Dominic
Cermele in a written statement says "We do our best
provide a safe environment for students and employees,
but our urban setting precludes living behind our
walls at all times. Please help us teach your children
to exercise prudence and caution once they are outside
Administration at the school will be meeting with the
captain of the 23rd police district and requesting
additional, beefed up patrols as children leave for
the weekend on Fridays, between the hours of 3 and 6
PM. Girard College stresses that the children involved
were not hurt. Parents retrieved the students and they
were taken home safely. Campus Patrols and Safety
Staff remind faculty and staff that they must be
vigilant and aware of the climate in the
community--outside the safe, secure walls of the
Students below 5th grade are never allowed to leave
the school without an adult; no student should ever
wait for the bus or trolley alone. Safety staff also
point out that students who do not live in the
immediate surrounding area should avoid certain
streets around the school.
Girard College issued a statement to parents stressing
"...students did exactly what we tell them to do in a
potentially violent situation; they did not confront
the armed robber. They gave him what little money they
had and returned immediately, as soon as safely
possible to the school's campus."
The names of the students or parents are not being
released for safety and confidentiality reasons.
Police sources say that the incident is under
investigation and that they will not comment on patrol
forces or techniques.
Meanwhile, students say they feel safe--both in the
school and outside. "It's an isolated incident. But,
it's also a part of living in a big city." said a
Girard College High School Senior inside CVS at Broad
and Girard last Friday. When asked if he was aware of
the incident prior to this he responded "No, it's the
first I heard of it."
Nathaniel Johnson is "Crime and Safety" reporter for
The Logan TIMES~Independent. He resides in
Willingboro, NJ. He may be reached at
Edited and posted by: Logan News Group (M. Delgado)
04 Mar 2006 18:37:09 0500 (Eastern) USA
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