School cheerleading dance-off sparks fight with parents and children  

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A friendly impromptu dance competition turned into a brawl between two Dallas-area schools’ drill teams. The fight between Wilmer Hutchins High School and James Madison High School’s drill teams happened after the football game ended last Friday at Wilmer Hutchins Stadium. Deshannon Roberts’ daughter, 15-year-old Shamyra Cooper, had a member from Madison High School come over to her and perform a mock routine.

“You do have a personal space in which you are supposed to respect,” Roberts said. “That was not respected, so it was heated at that point.” The dance team member from Madison returned and Cooper turned her back. Then there was a hit to the back of the head. “I immediately leaped over the rail and ran to the field, trying to get my baby,” Roberts said. “By that time it was chaos.” The field was filled with brawling dance team members and adults who had joined in. Dallas ISD released a statement condemning the actions of those involved.

“Impromptu dance-offs are not part of the approved performance for dance teams and fighting is never acceptable. Disciplinary actions will be taken as appropriate,” the district’s statement read. Later, the coach and sister of the girl accused of starting the fight said video of the incident is misleading. Karrington Wright said there was no hit to the back of the head by her 13-year-old sister, who danced for the James Madison Trojanettes. The alleged hit to the head triggered the brawl. “I was right there. I know what happened. So she didn’t hit her,” Wright said, adding that the motion of the Wilmer Hutchins dance team member’s hands show that she was never actually struck.

“She’s not that kind of person,” Wright said of her sister. “She’s never had a fight. She’s a baby.” Wright also said her younger sister got a busted lip and had her hair badly pulled. The mother of the 15-year-old on the Wilmer Hutchins drill team said it wasn’t just the hit – but the disrespect of violating her daughter’s personal space that inflamed tensions. Wright said the incident was never personal. Wright said she tried to break up the fight, but she was unable to calm things down. The principal of Madison High School has told Wright she’s no longer the coach of the Trojanettes. Wright’s younger sister has also been kicked off the drill team.

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