Two teenage girls arrested after Friday stabbing at Montgomery High School football game

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Two teenage girls were arrested after what police called a fight that escalated to a stabbing Friday night during a football game at Montgomery High School.

The incident was preceded by social media posts hinting at the impending violence during the game, Santa Rosa police said Tuesday.

Police suspect one of the girls, a 16-year-old Montgomery High School student who was stabbed during the fight, planned to confront the other teen arrested during the football game between Montgomery and rival Maria Carrillo High School. Her injuries are serious but not life threatening.

The second girl, a 15-year-old Piner High School student who previously attended Montgomery High and Maria Carrillo, learned of the confrontation and armed herself with a knife before the game, police said.

Santa Rosa police cited the 16-year-old with battery for initiating the confrontation. The Piner student also was taken to juvenile hall, though she was booked on suspicion of assault with a deadly weapon. Police didn’t identify either girl because both are minors.

“Through social media, there were posts and things that referenced these girls were going to fight,” said Santa Rosa Sgt. Josh Ludtke, who oversees the department’s violent crimes unit. “The witnesses were aware that there was some sort of bad blood between these girls.”

When their paths crossed, a fight ensued, leaving the 16-year-old student with stab wounds, police said. The teen noticed the wound after walking away from the fight and she was taken to Santa Rosa Memorial Hospital. Several others joined the melee before it was broken up, police said. A knife was found at the scene, police said.

Deborah Higgins Clark, 67, of Clearlake, said she was standing by a fence on the visitor’s side of the field in front of the bleachers, shortly before halftime when she noticed the altercation.

“I stand up, and I look and see fists flying and arms flailing,” Clark said. “I saw four girls fighting, one girl standing watching and I think there were a couple of guys there.”

Clark tried to stop the fight by attempting to pull people away from one another, she said. A group of men sitting on the visitor’s side of the field also tried to help by yelling at the girls to stop.

Several teens involved were bleeding by the end of the melee, Clark said.

“We were giving them tissue to stop the bleeding,” she said.

Detectives conducted dozens of witness interviews and collected recordings of the incident posted on Snapchat.

Ludtke did not know if the girls at the center of the fight attended Montgomery High School at the same time, but did say the girls knew each other through mutual friends and after attending the same school events.

“The common theme is that a lot of these folk are posting arguments and fights through social media, particularly Snapchat,” Ludtke said. “They’re hyping up the fight prior to it happening.”

Police say Friday’s incident is not connected to the Aug. 5 altercation at the Maria Carrillo High School campus when three teenage girls and a 17-year-old boy were arrested.

Police encourage anyone with information on the Friday stabbing to call the Santa Rosa Police Department’s violent crimes investigation hotline at 707-543-3590.

You can reach Staff Writer Nashelly Chavez at 707-521-5203 or nashelly.chavez@pressdemocrat.com. On Twitter @nashellytweets.

Editor's note: This story was updated because an earlier version misstated that the 16-year-old girl was booked into Sonoma County jail.

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