Frito-pie slinging triggers brawl By John Sena The New Mexican | October 6, 2005 A lunchroom fight involving a horde of Capital High School students erupted Wednesday after one student hurled a Frito pie at another student, according to police. A security guard and student were taken to St. Vincent Regional Medical Center after local and state police went to the school around noon. A rock or bottle struck the security guard in the face during the fracas, and the student was hospitalized as a precautionary measure after police used a stun gun to subdue him, city police reported. That student, 16-year-old Nick Mendoza, was arrested and charged with one count of battery on a peace officer and one count of resisting arrest, police said. Police say Mendoza assaulted a police officer during the fallout. Four other students were detained by police and later released to their parents, and Deputy Chief Eric Johnson said their cases are being reviewed for possible charges. Students who witnessed the fight said mayhem ensued when the student struck by the Frito pie became upset, began hitting tables and windows and threatened the pie thrower. Friends of both students got involved in the incident, and it spilled out of the cafeteria to the front of the schools gym. At one point, about 200 students gathered, either as participants or observers, Johnson said. The crowd shrunk to about 75 students after it moved outside. After the incident, the entire school was put on lockdown for the remainder of the afternoon, about three hours. Lockdowns require teachers to lock doors and windows, pull shades, turn off lights and make sure students sit away from doors and windows. Our first priority is to make sure the kids are safe, Superintendent Gloria Rendón said. If it means having to stay in the same class for a few hours, keeping them safe takes priority. Because of their proximity , officials at nearby César Chávez Elementary School and Ortiz Middle School locked down those schools as well. Officials at César Chávez lifted its lockdown shortly after the incident, while Ortiz officials stayed locked down the entire afternoon, Rendón said. At Capital, about two dozen vehicles were parked outside the schools gates, as parents and family members waited to hear if any students were injured. Lisa Ortiz said she went to the school after receiving a phone call from her son, a junior at the school. He called and said everybodys fighting and wanting me to come get him because he was scared, Ortiz said. School security guards tried to keep parents informed about what was going on inside. Announcements on the schools public-address system could be heard from the gate, but many parents drew their own conclusions about the incident. Some worried it was gang related, while others said it might have to do with rocky relations between local and immigrant students. Some parents also mentioned the need for more security at the school. Johnson said it was unclear if the fight was gang related when it started, but it might have included opposing gangs when it moved outside. School officials would not comment about any underlying factors, namely the relationship between local and immigrant students, that might have caused Wednesdays incidents . But Rendón said community issues often make their way into schools. Capital Principal Darlene Ulibarri continued to interview students after school and referred any questions to the districts public-information officer. While waiting for their buses, students talked among themselves about the incident, those who didnt see it getting details from those who did. A few admitted taking part in the fight, pointing out bruises on their faces.