A community reacting after eight teens from Christian County Middle School are accused of punching and kicking a 15-year-old.
Police say the attack was part of a gang initiation and took place off school grounds, along the 700th block of West 7th Street last week.
When police arrested the teens at the school days later, they say one of them happened to have two knives on him.
"He told detectives that the reason he had those knives on him was that his mother told him to take those knives to school to protect himself," says Officer Paul Ray of the Hopkinsville Police Dept.
Residents say they are shocked about the alleged beating and that kids need more guidance.
"I feel like we need to be more involved with the young people in the community," says Janet Tucker, a Hopkinsville resident.
"Kids have too much free time... they need some activities," added Donald Brake, another resident.
Police agree and say parents need to step up....
"Parents need to be aware of what they're children are doing, who their children are hanging out with," says Officer Ray.
Officers and the County's Superintendent say gang related activity is not common in the area, but they do have programs to prevent it from happening.
One is called the Gang Resistance Education and Training Program, also known as GREAT.
"Basically gives the students some tools to deal with the peer pressure they may feel, to be part of gang related activities," says Brady Link, the Superintendent of Christian County Public Schools.
The School's Assistant Principal also says they work with the Boys and Girls Club to keep their students busy.
She says other kids in the school initially told her about the beating.
"I don't think they meant harm, but it was an eyeopener, to let me know that the students came and trusted in us to tell us," says Kristy Elgin, the Assistant Principal at Christian County Middle School.
All eight teens face charges of assault while another also faces charges of carrying a concealed deadly weapon and unlawful possession of a weapon on school grounds.
They were being held at the Juvenile Detention Center in Paducah Tuesday.
Fortunately, the victim was not seriously injured.