MORENO VALLEY, Calif. (FOX 11) - Approximately 50 students at Landmark Middle School in Moreno Valley were dispersed by Sheriff's deputies using what's being described as a "pepper bomb" Tuesday afternoon.
Authorities say a fight had broken out among the large group of students and when deputies tried to break it up, the students refused to obey orders and pepper balls were used to disperse the crowd.
About 19 students were affected and three were taken to the hospital. No other injuries were reported.
One female student was taken into custody by law enforcement.
A spokesman for the school district said it all started after the school received a report of violence occurring on campus and a temporary lockdown was initiated until authorities were able to investigate and clear the incident. But, the spokesman said soon after, a large fight broke out and police had to be called back to school grounds.
School officials sent out a message to parents about the incident and advised them to get their children checked by the school or a doctor if they showed any symptoms of irritation following the use of pepper spray.