Caught on camera: Lackawanna High School fight breaks out in cafeteria

LACKAWANNA, N.Y. (WIVB) – We’re getting a closer look at a fight that broke out at Lackawanna high school last week. A 17-year-old student is accused of punching the principal.

Hillary Brown, 17,  is now charged with resisting arrest, harassment and disorderly conduct after she punched her high school principal. But she says a bullying incident during her lunch period led to a fight, and hurting the principal was a complete accident.

Brown said, “I’m usually well liked at that school by the teachers. They all like me, but this ruined my reputation.”

Friday, Brown said her classmates started throwing candy at her during a lunch period at Lackawanna High School. She said, “The kids, they just wanted to mess with me that day they wanted to throw candy at me, and I just flipped. I didn’t think it was right.”

Brown says after repeatedly asking the students to stop, she fought back, physically. A students cell phone video shows Brown running after the students engaging in a fight. She admits here, she was in the wrong:

She said, “I was ma, I was upset. I did do a little bit more then I should’ve,  it could have been handled differently. But I flipped, I got mad!”

But Brown claims she was being bullied, and then multiple students attacked her. She says an Art Teacher was in the cafeteria at the time, but didn’t get immediately involved.

Brown said, “A lot of kids work now a days if they see their friend fighting, I’m going to jump in and fight even if it doesn’t involve them whatsoever.”

But then it got worse. The High School Principal, Bruce Axelson, tried to break up the fight. That’s when Brown punched him in the left eye. Brown said, “But I didn’t mean to hit him, it was an accident.”

Brown was immediately placed under arrest but police tell us she refused to be handcuffed. Brown says she didn’t realize the in-school officer was with the police department. She said, “That behavior was totally uncalled for, and I could’ve handled it so much better, my reputation was so good at that school.”

Representatives for Lackawanna High School released a statement saying “the allegations are under investigation and we have no further comment at this time.”
Brown is suspended from school until further notice from the district. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Commenters who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. Please be respectful of the opinions of others. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review. Note: Comments containing links are not allowed.

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