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Officials to answer parents’ concerns — Town hall meeting set at Old Wesson School

Wesson’s police chief took to Facebook Friday to address concerns parents have had about an incident at Wesson Attendance Center.

Chief Chad O’Quinn suggested a town hall meeting would be beneficial for parents, school officials and law enforcement officers to discuss the safety of students in the school system.

The town hall meeting has been set for March 22 at Old Wesson School from 7-8 p.m.

The Daily Leader reported on Friday that police said “an undisclosed situation Tuesday at the Wesson Attendance Center prompted a response from the Wesson Police Department, as well as three other agencies.”

Officer Tim Stevens told the newspaper that the department investigated the situation and a juvenile was referred to Copiah County Youth Court in Hazlehurst. The department would not release any additional information.

The Wesson Police Department posted on Facebook that it responded to a complaint, but offered no additional information.

Later Friday, O’Quinn posted on the police department’s Facebook page that the student was charged with simple assault with intent to create fear.

He prefaced his statement by saying that officers at the police department have children and family members at the school, including himself.

“We are officers and also concerned parents ourselves,” he wrote. “We take any complaint serious and deal with it accordingly. The student we dealt with earlier this week was charged with simple assault ‘with intent to create fear.’ The complaint was statements that were made and we took immediate, swift action. The matter is now pending in youth court.”

O’Quinn said he’d like for parents, residents, school officials and law enforcement officers to “have a better understanding with each other and talk about any safety concerns or notifications of incidents.”

He is hopeful that it will be an informative discussion between officials and the public.

“This will be a great opportunity for us to come together as a community. This is voluntary participation for all guest speakers and this will not be the place for any disruptions, just a community discussion,” he said.

Wesson Mayor Alton Shaw said the discussion will help keep lines of communication open.

“We’d like to get some questions on the front end,” he said, but added that questions can also be asked that night.

To submit a relevant question in advance, contact Latisha Beasley at 601-622-4485, Melissa Williams at 601-748-6602, Mikina Holloway at 601-754-4482 or Libby Kirton at 601-320-6293.