12 News reports that the fight ended in a parent and a student getting arrested. The parent—who KOLD News 13 has identified as 40-year-old Willie Smith—was apparently on the campus to pick up his two sons who had already been involved in an incident with some students.
According to Rosalina Martinez—who is Smith’s brother, per 12 News—one of Smith’s sons has special needs and the brother was protecting him against students who had been bullying him for some time. Martinez then said her brother and his kids were attacked when they were exiting the school and walking to the car.
“He’s just pushing them off him, you can see in the videos that he’s pulled down, from his shirt to the ground. Then you can see a bunch of children, because they are children, closed fists hitting him in his head, kicking him in his body when he’s on the floor,” Martinez told the outlet. “When he’s trying to get up, that’s when they take that picture that shows that he has his arm on this kid’s neck. In reality, what he’s trying to do, is get up, and that’s when they take the picture.”
Smith was arrested and booked for a felony charge of disrupting an educational institution, and a 15-year-old male student was arrested and charged for disorderly conduct.
Tucson Unified School District Superintendent Dr. Gabriel Trujillo told KOLD that the fight started between two students who were quarreling over a mutual significant other. The two students were in conflict on Monday, which led to them taking their issues to social media that evening. The situation intensified on Tuesday, which is when the two students’ parents were supposed to pick them up. Trujillo blames Smith for further escalating the situation.
“It was during this invitation for these parents to come onto the campus to pick up their students in a responsible fashion to deescalate an already volatile situation that this parent made the decision to escalate the situation and not only escalate it, but to take advantage of the access he had to the campus as a parent of the currently enrolled student, run out onto the courtyard and physically attack another student,” Trujillo said. “I hold this parent responsible for the level of violence that we saw yesterday at Tucson High.”