JACKSONVILLE, N.C. (Whitton) – Community residents gathered at a meeting of the Onslow County Board of Education took the opportunity to deal with a fatal stabbing incident at Northside High School in Jacksonville.

People worry about what the future holds when it comes to school safety.

Regularly scheduled public meetings gave board members, community leaders and others the opportunity to voice their concerns.

Onslow County Board of Education chairman Bob Williams says uniting can improve youth involvement in gang activity.

“It needs to be discussed in the community. Gangs are an issue in any community,” Williams said. “When it comes to gangs, you have to approach the issue a little differently than you would with a normal street fight inside a school.”

Jacksonville community leader Mario Harris says showing young people compassion and love early on will ultimately prepare them for the world someday.

“We want adolescents and young adults to know that we love them,” Harris said. “We’re here to support them. We know there’s a lot they don’t understand about what’s going on in their bodies, in their communities, and in their schools. They’re ahead of their lives.” We are here to educate them because they need to know something.”

Jacksonville police are still actively investigating this crime and are serving three teenagers on a juvenile petition involving willful manslaughter.

Williams said the board will continue to meet with local officials to discuss ways to protect all students in the Onslow County school system.

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