New security measures at Warren Township High School football games after fight broke out

NBC Universal, Inc.

New security measures are now in place at future football games at Warren Township High School after a fight at last week’s home game against Maine South.

“Whatever they do to make sure it doesn’t happen,” said neighbor Odelia Socha. “I’m for it.”

Socha lives right next to the high school in Gurnee. The football field can be seen from her backyard.

“I’m so close to the school that I think if there were more severe problems that it might impact one of my neighbors or me,” she said. “I know that would be a shame.”

The superintendent of Warren Township High School District 121 sent an email to parents letting them know about the incident.

He said, “Near the end of the game, a fight broke out that involved students and adults. School officials and law enforcement became involved immediately and multiple students and adults were detained.”

Gurnee police told NBC Chicago a police officer was pepper sprayed by a 15-year-old girl from Zion while trying to break up the fight. She was charged with aggravated battery to a police officer and resisting arrest.

“It’s very alarming because we’ve never had any issues like that,” said Socha.

The superintendent said the district is implementing changes at home games to prevent another violent incident.

The changes include:

  • Visitors 18 and over should be prepared to show their ID to prove their age
  • High school students are required to show a school ID
  • High school students who do not attend Warren Township or the opponent's high school will be denied entry
  • Backpacks will not be allowed into the game
  • No entry after the 3rd quarter
  • Concessions will close earlier

Socha said officials had to shut down a back-to-school event after a fight broke out in the street. She knows the school is doing everything to make sure everyone is safe.

“I’ll be on guard more make sure I watch things, especially during game nights and things like that. I’ll be watching,” she said.

Administrators said the 15-year-old from Zion who was arrested and charged was not a student at Warren or Maine South. The next home game is Friday night against Libertyville.

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