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Half a million watch schoolboy fight online

Thursday, 9 February 2017

THE emergence of an online video showing schoolboys fighting in an Armagh car park went viral at the weekend.

Over half a million people have now viewed the clip online after it appeared on a number of social media sites.

Principal of St Patrick's Grammar School, Dominic Clarke said the matter had been brought to a close around eight months ago, when the incident took place, and had been effectively addressed by his predecessor and those involved at the time.

The clip, which lasts less than a minute, shows a group of pupils standing in Lonsdale Road car park as a number of students engage in fighting. The brawl is brought an abrupt end when an adult appears on the scene.

Although the footage was captured last year, its sudden appearance on a non-local Facebook page on Saturday has resulted in it being watched over half a million times.

This development, said Mr Clarke, highlights the dangers of content of this kind appearing online. "It is now there to be regurgitated again and again," he said, speaking as Safer Internet Day 2017 was marked on Tuesday, February 7.

"Unfortunately we don't have any control of who takes these clips and what they do with them.

“It happened last year and it was dealt with effectively by my predecessor and those involved and we have real concerns that the material has re-surfaced.

“I would appeal to anyone who has had the video shared with them to not pass it on.

With the matter long since settled, Mr Clarke stressed that the "care and integrity" of the students has been compromised" by the clip's emergence.

"The clip appearing online has caused great anxiety," he continued, "I hope that the significant work undertaken with the students involved has not been undone by this."

He added, "Our focus is on the wellbeing and care of the students. In light of this, I would urge any young person to give careful consideration to what they upload and post on social media."

 

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