Three New Rochelle High School Students Arrested near New Rochelle Public Library – UPDATED

Written By: Robert Cox

This story was updated several times from the original as more information became available.

March 11, 2009: We are just getting word of an incident at the New Rochelle Public Library involving a group of high school students from several schools in the New Rochelle area. Three students from New Rochelle High School were arrested. Initial reports indicated that the incident may have involved up to 16 students.

UPDATE: I just got off the telephone with Tom Geoffino, the Director of the New Rochelle Public Library and got some details.

The incident that took place Tuesday was preceded by an incident on Monday when the library hosts a movie program for teens. At some point during the movie event a young woman accidently squirted ketchup and it landed on one young man in attendance. The young man, thinking it had been done on purpose by another young man nearby, reacted negatively and the teens attending the event lined up to support their respective school mates. The Library responded by disbursing the students and so there was no escalation. Some of the young people involved in the incident returned on Tuesday. Geoffino says the Library had anticipated this possibility and was ready. The library security staff asked the students to leave and the police were called. The student left but congregated in a City parking lot nearby. The incident escalated in the parking lot and by the time the police arrived on the scene there was an altercation underway. At that point three of the students were arrested.

UPDATE: I obtained a copy of the arrest report from the New Rochelle Police Department.

According to the New Rochelle Police Department, they were called to the scene by the New Rochelle Public Library on the afternoon of March 10th. By the time police arrived, students had congregated in the City parking lot adjacent to the library. Students were asked to leave. Three students did not comply and were arrested for disorderly conduct.

Arrested were Divine Green of 4 Everett Street, age 16. Edward Smith, Jr. of 1 Allard Avenue, age 17. Olivier Famby of 290 Sickles Avenue, age 16. All three are juniors at New Rochelle High School

Elsewhere: 13 students charged in Ramapo H.S. brawl

4 thoughts on “Three New Rochelle High School Students Arrested near New Rochelle Public Library – UPDATED”

  1. The library needs to rethink
    The library needs to rethink its current practices. Apparently, teen-agers are using it as a hang-out place after they leave school.

    1. I did speak to someone who
      I did speak to someone who was on the board of the library and was told that this is a long-standing issue where parents of latch-key children tell their kids to go to the library after school and stay there until the parents are home from work.

      Generally, this would be a good thing – I would rather see students “hang out” at the library than on street corners. Ideally, the would be doing their homework.

      The concern, of course, is that you end up with large groups of unsupervised students who are not doing school work or reading books but roaming around, bored, looking for things to do to entertain themselves. That is going to often lead to problems like what occurred last week.

      The library is a public facility and is not going to be in the business of telling anyone they cannot enter the library. In most cases you likely have parents who are working to take care of the family who are unable to supervise their children from 3-6 PM.

      There are many elderly people who frequent the library as well as mom’s with very young children. They are likely to feel intimidated by the mere presence of large groups of teens in the library even if the teens are simply milling about. I have to believe that there are patrons of the library who choose not to go to the library after school precisely to avoid this situation. As is often the case we tend to consider those we can see (the students) and not that we cannot see (those who stay away because of the students),

      Any solution would have to be a coordinated effort between parents, schools and the library. The parents could start by instructing their children to join extra-curricular programs at the school. The school’s are open for students after 3 PM. Some effort should be made to proactively identify students who are leaving school and then coming to the library but not doing their homework or otherwise using the library as a library (as opposed to a day care center). The school and parent should be contacted to see about placing that student in an extra-curricular program. This might reduce the number of students showing up at the library. For the rest, perhaps a program could be developed to offer a structured learning environment at the library. It does not have to be homework. Also, the library needs help. They could set up a volunteer program to help library staff and give the volunteers some sort of recognition or credit for their effort.

      I am sure other folks can come up with additional ideas.

  2. Hats off to library security
    Hats off to library security for diffusing a situation in the library. Imagin if there was an altercation inside of the library while one of us was there with our kids. I’m glad to know security was on the ball. Thanks to you all!

  3. Will you please tell us the
    Will you please tell us the rest of the details of this story? Do you have names and prrof of the incident. Can you post the police report? I think we should get rid of basketball gangs if this continues. What do you think bob?

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