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Reading police will no longer patrol inside Citadel

By Dwayne Parker, Reporter, DParker@wfmz.com
Published On: Aug 29 2013 04:34:21 PM CDT
Updated On: Aug 30 2013 09:55:06 AM CDT

Dozens of parents and students at the Citadel were not happy to find out that police officers are set to be removed from inside the school.

READING, Pa. -

Dozens of parents and students at the Citadel were not happy to find out that police officers are set to be removed from inside the school.

Sources tell 69 News that there were about 160 arrests during the previous school year for students being caught on school property with weapons like brass knuckles, knives, bb-gun lookalikes, and for attacking the staff.

"If there's no police there, there are going to be fights everywhere," said Edwin Rivera, student. "I'm not exaggerating."

Even though it's just the first week of school, some students already alleged they were attacked.

"A kid wanted to know where I lived. I didn't want to tell him nothing, so he got pissed," said Gabriel Rivera, student. "So, he hit me in the chest."

Some parents say if police are pulled from the school, they are prepared to protest.

"I'll do whatever I can. I mean, I'll get parent by parent. Do what it takes," said Ronald Edens. "We need our the police here. The kids need to be protected."

School district officials say the $200,000 to pay for the police officers was not budgeted for, and that the superintendent is currently looking for grant money to pay for the shortfall.

"I would suspect that in the very near future, another week or so, that we'll hopefully have something in place," said school board president, Pierre Cooper.