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Nearby Shooting Forces Cancellation of High School Football Game

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Copyright 2013 The Palm Beach Newspapers, Inc.
All Rights Reserved

Palm Beach Post (Florida)
October 26, 2013 Saturday
FINAL EDITION
LOCAL & BUSINESS; Pg. 1B
456 words
Glades Central cancels football game;
Lockdown day before came after shooting less than mile away.
By Anthony Chiang and Alexandra Seltzer Palm Beach Post Staff Writers

BELLE GLADE -- Glades Central's high school home football game Friday night against Miami Northwestern was canceled because of "unrest in the community," officials announced Friday.

The decision to cancel the game stemmed from a shooting near Glades Central that forced the school to go on lockdown during an activity Thursday night, a source told The Palm Beach Post.

"Due to unrest in the community, school police, the Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office and the area's superintendent have canceled tonight's game against Northwestern," Glades Central co-Athletic Director Dennis Knabb said Friday.

According to Palm Beach County Sheriff's Office spokeswoman Teri Barbera, there was a shooting around 7 p.m. Thursday in the 2000 block of South Main Street, which is less than a mile from the high school.

Barbera said the shooting involved "a group of individuals" who have an "ongoing feud." One 17-year-old male was shot and a 15-year-old and a 17-year-old were arrested on charges of aggravated battery with a firearm and aggravated assault with a firearm. Deputies are searching for one more person.

The victim was hit in the leg and hip and was taken to Delray Medical Center with non-life-threatening injuries.

Barbera said the decision to forfeit the game was made by the school district, not the sheriff's office. "We were not involved in the decision process," she said.

Through its Twitter account, Northwestern's football team tweeted Friday, "Tonight's game vs Glades Central in Belle Glade has been canceled. Glades Central will forfeit the game due to Gang Violence in the area."

It is not the first time a threat of violence has affected a Glades Central football game. In 2008, the school district and the police decided it was in the interest of public safety to move the annual Muck Bowl between Glades Central and Pahokee from its usual Friday night slot to a Saturday afternoon at Pahokee. It was believed to be the first daytime kickoff in Muck Bowl history.

The change was made three weeks after Pahokee senior Norman Griffith was fatally shot in Belle Glade hours after a Blue Devils game. In a separate incident that week, Glades Central cornerback Byron Blake was shot in the hand.

The following year, the two teams also played on a Saturday afternoon in Belle Glade.

According to Knabb, the plan is for Glades Central to receive a forfeit loss as a result of the cancellation, but details are still being finalized. The Raiders entered the week with a 3-4 record.

Although Pahokee and Glades Day are not far away, Knabb said those Friday night games would not be affected. Pahokee hosted Seminole Ridge and Glades Day hosted Clewiston .

achiang@pbpost.com Twitter: @Anthony_Chiang aseltzer@pbpost.com Twitter: @alexseltzer

October 26, 2013

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