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Mt. Hope Fight Sparks 'Gang' Tension

A member of the "Juggalos" goes to the hospital, and the Mt. Hope High School student body reacts.

One student was rushed to the hospital and another was arrested following a fight after school on Thursday afternoon that touched off a torrent of reactions throughout the student body. The injured student is a member of a clique that identifies itself with a gang name, prompting some students to fear retaliation on Friday.

According to Lt. Steven Contente, two males were involved in a fight in the bus circle at Mt. Hope High School shortly after school let out.

"One of the boys was transported to the hospital with facial injuries and the other was taken to the station and will be referred to Family Court for assault," Contente said.

The fight doesn't end there. Students have created a frenzy on Facebook surrounding the fight and the student rushed to the hospital, who refers to himself as a "Juggalo," a known name for devoted fans of the band Insane Clown Posse (ICP).

According to a number of students at Mt. Hope, the Juggalos are a group of students who hang out together and share a common music appreciation for ICP and wear black face paint on their lips and around their eyes, similar to the makeup worn by the band.

However, Juggalos across the nation have been making headlines as FBI-recognized gang members. According to a recent article by Rolling Stone Magazine, the 2011 FBI National Gang Threat Assessment announced that Juggalos are a newly recognized gang whose crimes are "sporadic, disorganized, individualistic" and involve "simple assault, personal drug use and possession, petty theft and vandalism."

One member of the group at Mt. Hope recently denied the rumors that he and his friends were a "gang." On Facebook he wrote,

"I had someone tell me this morning I’m not a Juggalo and it’s not who I am well I’m sorry to the good friend who said this to me cuz I am a Juggalo and I’m down with the clown for life cuz I found my true family for life that always will have my back so f*** all you haters who can act like wiggers and preps but we can’t be who the f*** who we are and you wanna tell us we’re not Juggalos cuz to you people it’s a gang and your f****** wrong it’s a family and family lives forever WHOOP WHOOP!!!"

After the fight, Facebook exploded with status changes and comments from Mt. Hope students calling out the group of students.

"There's probably only one in every 10 posts on my news feed right now that doesn't have anything to do with the Juggalos," one senior said, noting that most of the posts were either hateful or fearful of the Juggalos. "Some people are worried that the Juggalos are going to retaliate and some are ready to fight these kids."

On Twitter, a Mt. Hope student with the username BruceyBYall115, wrote, "This juggalo shit is getting way out of hand," and followed up with a second tweet saying, "I'm deff afraid to go to school tomorrow...."

But to other students and social media users who have been kept in the loop, fearing or hating the group of students is a joke.

On Twitter, user WakaFlockaJordn responded to the hype to say, "to all my friends in Bristol, In order to destroy the Juggalos you must lure them into traps with Faygo and ICP merch."

One Mt. Hope senior said she doesn't buy into the widespread rumors.

"This is the dumbest thing I've ever heard of," she said. "Seriously, I think the people that are talking about it are way worse than the people who are dressing like that. No one is going to do anything, and in a week it'll be over."

One parent, worried that bullying has not been properly addressed at Mt. Hope, said she knows some of the kids known as Juggalos and says they are the furthest thing from an organized gang.

"I know some of these kids and their parents," she said. "They're good kids. If anything, they're the ones being picked on just because of the way they are dressed."

For another parent, the stories being told are just too much to ignore.

"It is very unsettling to hear, because as a parent, you want to know that your kids are safe at school."

Jack Baillargeron November 09, 2011 at 09:17 PM
How sad that in this modern and enlightened age of informtion, tolerence is still such a prevailent problem in this country. People who are different or not in the so called norm, which I have no clue what that is other than an opinion in the mind of the individual. Need to educate themselves on tolerence and parents need to teach it as being tolerent, not pity, not statements of weird, ignorant, unintelligent, evil, etc. They must be told the individuals have the right to to be the way they are and that right should be respected. History shows that a society based on non-tolerence of the differences of individual or groups, invaribly leads to violence and in many cases in history, genocide. It is the small things that add up and eventually become out of control. Want inspiration, I suggest every parent and child watch this short video, which is not about over coming odds, but about succeeding in life, no matter how different you are and being positive about yourself. It is a man who speak to children at schools about this, you will be impressed ad amazed at this man. It is also a pleasent surprise that people with this attitude on life exist. Web site link It has been checked, for malware and virus, none exist, it is safe. http://www.wimp.com/watchingthis/
Jack Baillargeron November 09, 2011 at 09:19 PM
Should have added every juggalo and anyone involved in this should watch that video link. Actually it should be shown in every school and grade in the country. Judge for yourself ;-}
Mike Williams November 13, 2011 at 11:48 PM
I know I am late to the party on this, but the gang affiliation label is (unfortunetly) valid. The FBI has recently labelled juggalos as a gang. I highly disagree with them, as I can assure you I do not participate in any criminal or gang activity, and I have been a juggalo for 15 years.
Queen Juggalo June 16, 2012 at 05:49 AM
I happen to come across this ... and had to reply ,, why , because I can ...Well I bet your NO answer is incorrect , I have a law Degree , worked for my local Police dept was a city employee and now own my own Promotion company ..I raised 6 children who have never been in trouble , 4 in college 2 work full time . I belong to several community groups .. OH and I have been a Juggalo for 20 years , I do know the artists known as ICP and other musicians signed with their label ..they do live the life style to a degree ...get your info correct be for you speak on a topic you know nothing about .
Momma Becca April 25, 2013 at 01:42 PM
Was looking for something completely different when I stumbled across this article. All I can do is laugh. First of all, this is a perfect example of the media again hyping a situation for headlines. Secondly, ohhhhhhh please! I know both of these boys personally. Now that the smoke has cleared and whatever has happened has already... Shame on the reporter! A quick background of the child purportedly in a gang would have revealed how useless this whole article is. As for the kids hyping it online? They're kids! That's what KIDS do. Mr. Non-gang member is a little bad ass whom I adore, Mr. Juggalo is the first person to run up and give me a hug if he sees me in passing. And to the parents that feigned fear of sending their kids to school... if you took a little while to get to know your kids friends and classmates, you would have laughed at this from the start. Yaaaaawn. -I am a local mother of 3 teens.

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