Cleveland Heights high school plays first basketball game following massive brawl

Published: Jan. 27, 2023 at 10:28 PM EST

CLEVELAND HEIGHTS, Ohio (WOIO) - Cleveland Heights-University Heights City School District sent us an email saying they were beefing up security at Friday night’s basketball game.

It was the first hoops game following a massive brawl at another basketball game against Garfield heights on Tuesday.

Despite the school’s claims to be increasing security, our 19 News crew was able to walk right inside the building Friday night. The doors were unlocked and there was no security at the door and no metal detectors. A few minutes after they got inside, our crew was kicked out by school officials who said all media requests for Friday’s game were denied.

“Well, I think that was carelessness right there,” said Cleveland Heights parent Craig Moore. “I think it starts right here at the door something that simple you know so they have to do better than that.”

19 News obtained body camera video from the chaotic brawl at Cleveland Heights High School following a Tuesday night basketball game against Garfield Heights. The fight happened in the parking lot. Police said at least 50 students were involved and one student even decked a Cleveland Heights cop right in the face.

“It’s embarrassing to me it’s totally embarrassing I’m just glad you know we were able to get out when we did,” said parent Patty Moore. “My daughter said that they were right there fighting in front of their car they couldn’t move.”

Nobody wanted a repeat of that violence at Friday night’s hoops game.

“It’s nerve-wracking being at the games,” said parent Desiree Gray. “I’m not gonna miss a game however when it’s time to go I gather my people and I say let’s get out of here cause it gets rough.”

For Friday’s game the district limited tickets to family members of Cleveland Heights and Maple Heights high school players and cheerleaders.

The district also said they were increasing the police presence inside and outside of the school.

“The police can’t do but so much,” said Craig Moore. “They can try to stop but then they get hurt.”

Some Maple Heights family members we spoke to said violence has happened at their basketball games recently too.

“Right after a kid got brought down by a cop right in the middle and then outside it was ridiculous,” said Gray.

“Cause a couple weeks ago at maple heights high school it was the same situation that happened right here against Garfield,” said Curtis Granger Jr, who was at the game to watch his brother play. “It was teenagers that was fighting, cops got into it, a boy got tackled by cops and it was just like crazy and six people got arrested that night.”

This wasn’t the first incident involving Cleveland Heights and Garfield Heights. In August there were gunshots in the parking lot after a football game. Thankfully no one was hurt.

As far as we know, there weren’t any fights Friday night.

Police are still investigating the massive fight from earlier this week. So far, no charges have been filed.