Fear of Violence Keeps Students Home

Less than half of the students at Bertie County High School showed up for class Tuesday. Bertie County Sheriff Greg Atkins says the low attendance is a result of fear caused by rumors swirling around of possible gang retaliation at the school because of the execution of former California gang member Stanley "Tookie" Williams.

While no incidents actually occurred, Atkins says he received close to fifty phone calls from concerned parents over the past few days. Some parents are frustrated school officials did not notify them of a potential problem.

School officials would not comment on the situation. Sheriff Atkins says additional deputies were stationed at the school Tuesday.