CLEVELAND – Students were forced to evacuate Cleveland's Nathan Hale Middle School on Martin Luther King Boulevard on Tuesday after dozens got sick after something was sprayed in the hallways, Action News' Wendy Gillette reported.
Hundreds of students were standing outside of the building, watching as 22 of their classmates, including seventh-grader Travis Cannon, were treated for exposure to pepper spray.
"It hit me," Cannon said. "My eyes were red. My nose was running. I was coughing. I couldn't breathe."
Cannon, 12, and almost two-dozen of his classmates had to leave the school by ambulance. A cook and a teacher also went to the hospital.
A school district spokesman said that a student used the pepper spray in a hallway just after 9 a.m.
"We had to go in the hallway," student Andre Lewis said. "Everybody was evacuated. They were coughing, and everybody got sent to the hospital."
The rest of the students waited for about 20 minutes outside until firefighters aired out the building.
Cannon, however, had to spend several hours at the Cleveland Clinic. He said that he couldn't understand why this happened.
"I feel hurt that someone would do this to their classmates, their friends," he said. "I don't know why they'd do it.
"They should get suspended and sent to another school."
School officials said that believe they know who sprayed the pepper spray -- a 13-year-old boy. He'll face punishment through the school district, but police have also launched an investigation.