Reported By Jonathan Martin
It's one of the biggest football matchups in town Friday: Hunters Lane High School versus Maplewood High School. But sports fans aren't the only ones paying close attention to the game; police will also have an unusually strong presence at the game.
"We are very concerned that everyone has a good, safe time tonight," said Ralph Thompson of Metro Nashville Public Schools. "We've had some concerns at either school over the past week."
Last week, five students and two women were arrested outside Hunters Lane along with two students at Maplewood for fights school officials said may have been gang-related.
There is no specific threat Friday night; police said the extra security is precautionary.
For the first time, new lighting marquees will also be at the game to get everyone's attention.
"We want all of our people to know we are out in full force to provide safety for everyone," Thompson said.
Twenty-six police and school security officers have been assigned to the game. That's more than double the norm. And for the first time at a high school game this season, fans can expect their cars to be searched and metal detectors at the gate.
"We will have Metro police right on the scene of the search, so if we find something on someone that's illegal in any way, there will be an immediate arrest made," said Thompson.
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