Archived Story

Discipline, bans to come following FHS basketball incident

Published 11:42am Wednesday, February 19, 2014

FRANKLIN—Fifty people in the stands and on the benches from both sides rushed the court during the Franklin High School and Surry County High School basketball game Friday night.

Principal Travis Felts said the incident occurred following a jump ball situation, as the two teams battled for the ball on the ground. The problem, he said, came when players and fans started to rush the floor as the referees were trying to separate the student-athletes.

“What we are dealing with were people in an unauthorized area,” said Felts. “If it had just been the kids on the court, we could have handled that.”

He added that nobody was hurt, and nobody threw any punches.

“I’m not the type to sugarcoat anything – it was not a good situation at all,” Felts said. “But it was not to the extent that everyone is thinking. There were not little fights breaking out all over the gym.

“I’ve watched the video. We had one kid get shoved in the chest, and luckily, he did not retaliate, as then it could have gotten out of hand.”

Police backup was called by the officers on the scene at 7:40 p.m., said spokesman Capt. Tim Whitt, and they arrived within minutes and dispersed the crowd. The game, which was not close, was called and the police helped the Surry team to their bus as a precaution. Whitt also confirmed that no one was hurt, and that police did not charge anyone during the incident.

Students, on both the Surry and Franklin side, have been disciplined, both those who came from the benches and the stands. Adults involved will receive bans from future Franklin High School sporting events, said Felts.

Felts said in all of his years, he’d never seen anything like this.

“I’ve been going to these events since I was a student,” he said. “To my memory, we’ve never had an incident like this.”

  • justbecause

    Why must we always have to dig up and dwell on the bad. If you are going to do that, find ways to help the problem, not constantly stir into it!

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  • SandMan

    Maybe the TN should do a piece on Shawn House, the former FHS student & Southside Drug Dealer who was arrested for a homicide in Newport News last night. Grew up on Pretlow St., dealt crack with his Mom & 2 brothers (biological) at South & Washington, moved to Suffolk, commits murder in Newport News.
    “From Hi/Lo to Death Row”.

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  • GrandKynd

    What did I tell you……”stupidity has no color or intellectual restrictions.” Robby, you’re a prime example of my point. TY, sir.

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  • GrandKynd

    http://www.complex.com/city-guide/2013/01/biggest-college-campus-riots-in-history/

    Care to delve into that? Let’s see about participants involved. Let’s also discuss SOL scores…lol. Stupidity has no color or intellectual restrictions, as we can see with some of the idiotic responses here by those who think ignorance is limited to a certain culture.

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    • ROBERT GREEN

      If we are talking riots,I am pretty sure the biggest Riots in history were the LA riots, Look who it was. They burned their own neighborhood, how smart was that?

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  • GrandKynd

    Ignorance abounds here as the conversation among the “educated” places a lot of the blame on welfare. Really? Social programs amount to peanuts when compared to the WELFARE given to corporations by YOUR government, so let’s REALLY keep it real. Who’s at the head of these large establishments that rapes the country year after year with bailouts, corruption, manipulated markets, and God knows what else. What side of the “tracks” are those boys from? Let’s talk REAL welfare, and leave the poor folks alone.

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  • 1stAmendment

    I just finished teaching the late 19th Century concept of “Social Darwinism.” My 11th graders were dismayed, shocked, angered by such thinking and beliefs.
    Well, I guess I can now teach them it is alive and well here in Franklin/Southampton.

    But actually, not being “from here” I pretty much already had that figured out.

    Won’t you be surprised when you come face to face with Jesus, and find he is “not white.” If you doubt it, look up the area and ethnography from where Jesus and his disciples hail.

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    • ROBERT GREEN

      Let us all know what color he is when you get there.

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    • BlondeStranger

      Touche, 1stAmendment!

      Your comment reminded me of one of my favorite quotes of all time:

      “Travel is fatal to prejudice, bigotry, and narrow-mindedness, and many of our people need it sorely on these accounts. Broad, wholesome, charitable views of men and things cannot be acquired by vegetating in one little corner of the earth all one’s lifetime.”
      –Mark Twain

      It seems to me that there are a few people posting here who would do themselves, and their community, quite a favor by getting out of the Franklin/Southampton area once in a while.

      I don’t doubt for one minute that some of the problems people have referred to in these comments can be generalized along racial lines. In fact, I know this can be done, and I also believe that the generalization would be accurate, for the most part. But, what’s sad is that some people seem to believe that skin color is the root cause of the problem. Nothing could possibly be further from the truth. If folks would take Mr. Twain’s advice, they would realize this (well, assuming they aren’t too stupid to learn.) They would also learn what buffoons they’ve made of themselves with their comments here.

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      • 1stAmendment

        Thanks for sharing that Mark Twain quote – I have put it in my back pocket.
        My grandmother used to say “He who doesn’t travel has no true stories to tell.”

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    • seymorebutts

      1stAmendment lets leave mythical beings out of this and focus on reality…

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    • broman

      1stA, won’t you be surprised when you find He has no race. I hope you aren’t exposing your 11th graders to that nonsense.

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      • 1stAmendment

        Do I teach geography? Why, yes, yes I do.

        As to “leaving mythical figures out of it” – historians, scientists, and theologians are in agreement that Jesus of Nazareth was a real person. Mythical, how?

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      • seymorebutts

        1stAmendment – The same can be said for Hercules. Although even you can or should admit he was transformed by humans into a mythical being…

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  • broman

    I hope FCPS and FPD are ready for it when it does boil over. They were lucky this time.

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  • ROBERT GREEN

    That’s what happened, someone dropped their snap card on the court and them people rushed to get it. (And i did say THEM PEOPLE). Got to goes to Walley Mart and gets some stakes and ship for after the games. That;s what they spend it on, and a separate transaction at the register for their beer new clothes. The problem is across the tracks, as soon as you cross the tracks and hit South Street. The biggest problem is there is no fence to keep them Across the tracks and they are free to roam. Bobs94- You are correct- The problem you speak of IS NOT Limited to Franklin, it is Nation wide. And there is NO fix, it will only get worse. Have nice day

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  • MyHometown

    This is not a black/white issue. It is a poverty issue. The more affluent a family is the more likely they are to be concerned with the education of their children. ( You don’t have to agree with me. Check the stats.) This is also a culture issue. We continue, both black and white, to separate ourselves from one another both purposely and inadvertently to the point that we don’t understand each other or have a tolerance for the differences among us. Then we have stories in the news like the youth shot over his loud music. An offended adult overeacted and shot a disrespectful youth. I fear that we are going to see more of this because white America is tired of giving in to diversity to be subjected to what amounts to social bullying. There is a double standard for acceptable behaviours, attitudes, etc between blacks and whites. For years whites have felt like they have had to bite their tongue when they were offended by blacks. Now they are pushing back and we are seeing violent actions. It seems that many whites have grown tired of being neglected politically and socially and that is the fuel for the strong language some have displayed in earlier post on this article.

    Yes there is a disproportionate number of black families on federal and state assistance when you look at the percentage of the population each ethnic group represents. And yes, it is quite dishaertening to see our society degraded by those among us who seem not to care. Getting angry about it doesnt help if all we do is get on here and make anonymous comments and point out our obvious discontent. I know plenty of white families that are having children out of wedlock, living together, and drawing state and federal assistance. Many of them were brought up in upper-middleclass families and have college degrees. They have learned to play the system. The political pandering for votes makes it possible and for many it is an attractive, and lucrative, option for an increasing number of people.

    When we quit blaming others for our problems, clean up the criminal elements among us, and make it so that it is no longer profitable to be a non-productive citizen we will then see improvement. If we don’t this country will continue to loose our national prominence. We need to quit catering to the non-productive and help those that are trying to improve their lives and those around them.

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  • 2forme

    Where can I find a copy of Coastal Virginia with this information? Did they actually use the term “violent”?

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  • happycamper

    This debate of comments has the potential to get as ugly as the incident itself. Let’s all show some restraint, but let’s also shoulder our share of the responsibility. I agree with simplifyingit in that it’s true that this type of behavior wasn’t seen a few decades ago. What has changed? What is missing or perverted in our society that allows this type of thing to happen? Just this past week a young man was stabbed to death following a high school basketball game in Columbia, SC. What have we done as a society to allow such senseless acts? Better yet … what are we as a society going to do to right this ship. Violence seems to be as okay with some as cheating has become. Call me an old fogey. I just don’t get it.

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    • simplifyingit

      one way to fix it…….stop taxing the working class to poverty so that the non-working can live. In every form of life, the strong, hard working always survive and the weak and unable to provide for themselves die out. Sounds harsh but people who have things given to them have no ambition to work, get stronger, educate or become better because they will be taken care of. That killed the middle class of society that we once knew, no worker’s just work to barely make it while 1/3 of their earned income goes to “needy” and the white collar class(politicians and people of “influence) continue to “feel sorry” for the needy, voting to give them even more……of the worker’s income and their income never changes. They sleep better at night and get more votes from the “needy” to keep them in office. A vicious cycle. We need to have term limits or lifetime maximums on welfare, medicaid, SNAP, TNAF and all those programs so that the “needy’ will be forced to strive for better while being helped, knowing their help will end sooner rather than NEVER. Just saying

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      • simplifyingit

        CORRECTION:Now workers…..written as no workers

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    • spider68

      happycamper—I feel that one of the things that we have done as a society, is to allow through forums such as this, vicious, venomous tripe such as spewed by bobs94 SlimPickens, simplifyingit, and others because of their right to freedom of speech which probably neither one has ever picked up a weapon in defense of.
      They feel free to spout this across the tracks and welfare garbage, with the attitude that it will never happen to me. They seem to think that welfare is a totally black governmental program, not understanding that countrywide, 67% of the welfare recipients are white.
      Even though their speech is not very nice. I spent more than 20 years doing my part to help protect those rights, so I applaud their right to use it.

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      • simplifyingit

        Great job spider….you just proved my point, with numbers, of how overtaxed working americans are with your statement of:”They seem to think that welfare is a totally black governmental program, not understanding that countrywide, 67% of the welfare recipients are white.”
        I’d bet 10-12% of that 67% work, earn about $450 a week but only bring home around $300 because of taxes and benefits. Without that tax deduction from their checks they wouldn’t need welfare.

        While i commend your gracious years of service in the US military, you shouldn’t use it as a weapon to make someone feel bad about themselves or good about you. A true hero never tells someone how great he/she is because other people are busy doing it.

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      • Really

        United States Department of Commerce statistics as of 1/1/2014:
        Total number of American’s on welfare – 12,800,000
        Percent of US population on welfare – 4.1%
        Total government spending on welfare annually (not including food stamps or unemployment)131.9 billion dollars
        Races on welfare, percent:
        White – 38.8% US white population – 72.4%
        Black – 39.8% US black population – 12.6%
        Hispanic – 15.7%
        Asian – 2.4%
        Other – 3.3%
        As one can see, there are far more blacks on welfare than whites.

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      • bobs94

        So what if you spent 20 years in the military. you haven’t defended my rights. There is no other country in the world that is a threat to my rights except the US. You are not some hero and you certainly have not done anything for me.

        I am not a fan a of welfare. I have never needed it and never will. I would rather starve than to take a hand out. I have a sister that has been on welfare most of her life. I would have rather she starve as well.

        I’m simply calling it like it is. Franklin has a black problem that gets worse every time a young, uneducated black teen has a child. It’s really that simple. The solution is birth control.

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      • spider68

        bobs94—From your statements, I really wish that I had never helped to defend your rights. Do you realize that in lots of countries, you would not have the right to make the kind of statements that you are making here? If you think the U.S. is taking away your rights, then, sir you are free to leave at any time.
        Also, any man that would rather see his own sister starve than accept help, says an awful lot about your character, sir.

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      • seymorebutts

        Spider68 you flat out lied about the 67% & you lose all credit for now on. A.A’s are about 12.6% of the U.S. population and account for 31.9% of all welfare money received which is the highest percent of any race in America.

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      • bobs94

        Keep telling yourself that you were defending my rights by going to another country and killing and destroying other people’s property. Defending my rights. You’re funny.

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  • SlimPickens

    Franklinites need to wake up and smell the coffee. Your fine City is under seige from the community ‘across the tracks’. You wonder why your School system is failing, yes the leadership is to blame but this is the caliber of the Charecter of the folks you need to step up and take responsibility. We can all ‘hope’ the parents will take charge of their children but those who rushed the court was 80% adults!! If they cannot exhibit proper behaviour at a Basketball game what makes any of us think they will exhibit the proper behaviour in the game called ‘Life’?

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    • mr23851

      @slimpicken And of those 80% how many did you see go on the court to get their child out of harms way. I saw quite a few doing that, from both teams. If the section of kids in the corner right next to the police officer wouldn’t have come on the court first, the coaches and refs could have handled that situation. Your acoss the track statement tells me a little about your mentality that I had to deal with when I was at Franklin High back in the 80′s. What is your solution to the percieved problem of the people from cross the tracks? By the way, I’m one of the across the track folk you are referring to.

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  • GrandKynd

    @bobs94 – you can’t be more ignorant than that. You speak just like the PWT that you are. That type of aggression was bred from the slavemaster maybe? Any of you “civilized” folk care to address that?

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    • seymorebutts

      Yes. Bob94 told it like it really is. Sorry if it’s not politically correct enough for you. Some people refuse to face the truth such as you perhaps and until they acknowledge the problems, nothing will change. Try comparing certain areas of the census data next to the crime rates and SOL scores.

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  • 20gauge

    Why was this article hidden on the back page of the T/N ?When incidents of this nature arise, our community needs to be well aware of the depths to which the public school system has deteriorated. We must sadly realize a segment of the Franklin population has not a clue about the modicum of behavior necessary for civilized society.

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  • bobs94

    This is what happens when you have a large amount of black people gathered. You can say I’m racist all you want or that my comment is offensive. I really don’t care. The conduct of the people at the game is what really should be offensive. There is no fixing the problems that plague the city until blacks start accepting responsibility for their own situation. Sometimes the truth is offensive.

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  • seymorebutts

    “I’ve watched the video. We had one kid get shoved in the chest, and luckily, he did not retaliate, as then it could have gotten out of hand.” Why wasn’t he arrested for assult? Is the FPD sending a message to everyone that it’s ok to forcefully shove people in anger?

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    • SandMan

      Good question Seymore! But it’s “assault”…not “assult”.

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  • mule

    @simplifyingit …I read the same article from the same issue, probably in the same Dr’s office………..take in all the social economical factors and it just does not suprise me at all……….sometimes things must hit rock bottom before they are better……Well the City of Fanklin Public schools are at rock bottom……….what are we waiting on something worse

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    • simplifyingit

      Help me find racial comments in what i typed below too??? See where motivated teacher referred to it???? I’m lost as to where they saw that??

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  • FromHere

    You can’t expect students to conduct themselves any better unless the parents set an example, and I’m sure there were adults right out there in the mix as well. Should all be cited for disorderly conduct, have to go to court and pay a fine.

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  • simplifyingit

    Ha, not that surprising. Recently read an article in Coastal Virgina magazine that FHS is second only to Woodrow Wilson in Portsmouth in number of violent occurrences per 100 students. Yes that’s right, worse than any Newport News, Hampton, Suffolk, Richmond or other high schools. FHS and the Franklin School system is in complete disarray. An embarrassment to all citizens. Just look at the requirements to remain eligible for athletic competition……FHS is the lowest in the state that i can find through research.
    What we need here is to shut the doors the summer….fire all the top people and start completely over with someone NOT FROM FRANKLIN but northern Va and restyle everything from cafeteria menu to lesson plans. Most importantly have true disciplinary action for unruly students….send their behinds home. Let the students who want to be there and are trying to learn be most important, not the “bad kids” we need just for numbers for state money and grants.

    Sad…..Sad, and yes Surry High may share some of the blame for this particular incident but no FHS student or parent from the 70′s-80′s would have reacted like that.

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    • Motivated Teacher

      I have worked at FHS for three years and in that three years we have had three fights…I don’t know where the data came from that suggests we have a violent school, but to my knowledge there are not a whole lot of schools that can say that they that safe…as for the other comments on race, well as a white male teacher that lives in the city, I love the students and families of this community…can’t believe some people carry such prejudices in the 21st century!

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      • mule

        at motivated teacher……. the school system sent the data into the publication and data does tell only one story…. that Franklin High School had the 2nd highest rated occurrences per 100 students. The magazine is called Coastal VA comes out several times a year and one issue sports the teacher of year and school related data…………then they summarize the data GIVEN TO THEM BY THE SCHOOL DISTRICTS

        BTW I have been a teacher for 28 years…..nothing surprises me anymore………….

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      • simplifyingit

        I didn’t say anything about race???? If you read anything racial into what i wrote it’s because you’re a racist! Also, if you’re a teacher with punctuation like yours and no proofreading whatsoever you might be part of the education problem! “but to my knowledge there are not a whole lot of schools that can say that they that safe” is your statement……WTH does that say? Where did you go to school???? Pitiful punctuation!!

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