Truancy sweep nets 25 youths

By Ed Brock

The Clayton County Sheriff's Office most recent truancy sweep netted 25 youths, one of whom was later found to have a pocketknife on his person and was hiding from bullies.

All of the youths, ranging in age from 14 to 16, were returned to their respective schools, sheriff's Lt. Tina Daniel said. Daniel said 16 of the students were from Jonesboro High School, seven were from Mundy's Mill High School, one was from Kendrick's Middle School and another was from the Clayton County Alternative School.

The sweep was held in the areas around those schools in Jonesboro and Rum Creek Park was the operations center.

It appeared that the 14-year-old male Kendrick student was simply lost.

"He was looking for a ride to school because the other kids told him the wrong time for the bus," Daniel said.

The student with the pocketknife, a 15-year-old male Jonesboro High School student, was arrested after he was returned to the school. He told police that he was on his way to school and had the knife because some other students at the school had been bullying him.

"He admitted it and said it was a bad decision," Daniel said.

The student was brought before a Clayton County Juvenile Court judge Wednesday afternoon, Daniel said. Because the student had no other record of being in trouble he was only ordered to receive counseling on how to handle bullying situations, Daniel said.