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Security to be increased for East St. Louis HS graduation

EAST ST. LOUIS - It’s been quite the end of school year for East St. Louis students.

A former track star was shot and killed, a fight breaks out at prom and the track team loses its season following a brawl in the stands.

“It shouldn’t be just about their behavior, it should be about their future,” community activist Erica Brooks said.

As a result of each of those incidents, Superintendent Arthur Culver is adding more security to the graduation ceremony scheduled for Tuesday.

The school district will be using metal detectors and wands as family and friends enter the ceremony.

Brooks says she understand the superintendent’s precautions but is still worried about track athletes.

“If they have personal issues they need to solve them somewhere else,” Brooks said.

St. Clair County deputies and Illinois State Troopers will be assisting East St. Louis Police in providing safety.

ISP District Commander Timothy Tyler says with each student receiving roughly 10 tickets, about 3000 people are expected at the commencement ceremony.

Tyler says this safety plan is being led by superintendent Culver so that the graduation stays about the students and remains prosperous.

The commander also says there will be some officers not in uniform sitting in the crowd so if anything happens, someone is there to put an end to it as soon as possible.