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THURSDAY, MAY 31, 2007

DA says teacher assault gang-related; 2 arrested

MOBILE (AP) — Two students accused in an alleged gang-related attack on a Mobile schoolteacher have been arrested on felony assault charges.

Mobile County District Attorney John Tyson Jr. in a court document identified the alleged attacker as Randolph Parker, 16, and a student accused of videotaping the incident as Dominick Harris, 17.

Though juveniles, their names were released because they were charged as adults. If convicted of the second-degree assault charge, they could be sentenced to 10 years in prison.

Parker, who is accused of striking the 61-year-old teacher at Murphy High School in the face on May 18 in a school hallway, was arrested Wednesday. Harris was arrested Tuesday night.

The English teacher, Melinda Rudesill, who required about 20 stitches around her eye, could not be reached for comment.

In the court filing reported Wednesday, prosecutors said the students attacked their teacher and filmed it “for the purpose of providing evidence of the attack to a street gang in Mobile.”

Murphy High principal Doug Estle said he does not believe Parker and Harris were involved in any gang. He contended that Murphy does not have a gang problem. He said students who get into altercations in their neighborhoods sometimes bring those fights to school.

Estle said the situation surrounding the teacher attack seems more like a student trying to get revenge than a gang activity. The teacher had just recommended that Parker be suspended for using obscene language, Estle said.

Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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