A local football rivalry turned ugly Saturday when teens from opposing high schools got in a brawl shortly after a close game.
Police say a large fight broke out in the parking lot of Chipotle in West Caldwell after the James Caldwell High School varsity home game against West Essex ended with the Caldwell Chiefs losing, 17-14, in the final seconds.
Three teens face charges and police say additional charges are pending. The boys, who have not been identified because they are minors, could also face disciplinary action at school.
Police officers from West Caldwell, assisted by Caldwell, North Caldwell, Essex Fells and Fairfield, spent more than an hour on the scene trying to break up the large and unruly crowd.
Before the Chipotle fight, police responded to the intersection of Lane Avenue and Park Street and found a group of students from both schools. Several students reported being assaulted, according to police.
Caldwell-West Caldwell Schools Superintendent James Heinegg said, according to a recent ruling, schools may take disciplinary action in incidents that occur off school grounds if there is a connection "between the student’s conduct and the orderly administration of the school.”
Heinegg said, "Once we receive a final report about this particular event, we will analyze the situation based on that test and proceed accordingly."