Rogue rock-throwers causing havoc - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

Rogue rock-throwers causing havoc

by Michele Catahay

Guam - They're known as "The Outgaters" - a group of at least six kids who skip school and hang out at a nearby jungle area outside of the two Yigo campuses that cut through the fence and throw rocks.  School aides and police have tried to catch them but so far they've had no luck-leaving staff and students fearing for their safety.

FB Leon Guerrero Middle School and Simon Sanchez High School students who have chosen to play hooky on a daily basis and instead wreak havoc on anyone they see make up The Outgaters.  When they're not being watched, the kids run through the fence and throw rocks.  A FBLG school aide, that explicitly asked that his identity not be revealed, told KUAM News, "The Department of Education has fixed that fence three times so far this year. So far it's down again. That's what it is. We were going to try to do that every time and they come over and break it down, something is really wrong. I don't know if DOE has the money to spend on these fences."

The school aide he says the kids wear t-shirts to cover their faces and are quick to run away when they're caught in the act.  FBLG has more than 1,500 students and only five school aides - so it's nearly impossible to ensure kids or staff aren't injured. The situation has gotten so bad, that the Guam Police Department has been called on several occasions.

The aide said, "So far, I guess they're tired, too, you know? They're tired of running around in the jungle. These kids, if they're suspended, they should stay home. They'd rather come next the school and waste their time outside."

Even Education Suruhanu Dominic Terlaje and Acting Attorney General John Weisenberger have stepped-in as the dangerous situation was noted during Terlaje's recent visit to the campus.  FBLG Assistant Principal Patrick Egrubay says some of their former students and Sanchez High students have been caught and were suspended and some even expelled.

He said, "One of the problems that we're experiencing is that it's difficult to identify the students who are throwing rocks. We cannot identify them from a distance and they cover themselves up with a shirt. It is very hard for the school administration to take action against the students."

Yigo mayor Bob Lizama is alarmed at the situation and says it's time somebody rounded up the rogue rock throwers, saying, "I look at the administrators as being responsible. I believe that the administrators are to be blamed for this entire problem. This is the first since I've heard of something of this magnitude of violence that is happening on the campus. I hold that principal accountable."

Now Mayor Lizama says it appears that the parcels of land - the jungle area - where these kids are hiding out during the day is under the Chamorro Land Trust Commission.  He's hoping that whole area can be cleared to ensure this situation stops. Even the AG sent a letter to the Department of Land Management to determine exactly who owns the property adjacent to the schools.

Lizama says if necessary, he'll call for a town hall meeting to reach a solution and ensure the safety of the kids at the school.

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