On January 6, 2017 at approximately 12:30 p.m., the Anne Arundel County Police Department was made aware of a petition containing racially charged, highly offensive language, and anti-African American sentiment that was passed around among a few students at Arundel High School.
School administrators quickly identified the student responsible as well as two other students who signed the petition. During the course of the police investigation, detectives attempted to locate any criminal charge that would apply to this incident. After conferring with the State’s Attorney’s Office, we all agreed that the petition and behaviors of the students were extremely disturbing and reprehensible, however their actions were found not to rise to the level of a criminal offense. The police department has documented this incident and the Board of Education will be conducting its own investigation.
After finding out about this incident, Anne Arundel County Executive Steven R. Schuh stated, “This kind of reprehensible behavior has no place in any school in Anne Arundel County. Our schools should be safe places that embrace diversity and reject racism. I commend Superintendent George Arlotto and school administrators for their swift and effective handling of this unfortunate incident.”
State’s Attorney Wes Adams and Police Chief Timothy J. Altomare also join Dr. Arlotto in condemning the message of hate communicated in this petition. “We believe in the cohesion of all communities in Anne Arundel County and we join with our minority community leaders in stating unequivocally that there is only one race, the human race.”