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Baltimore School Board Holds “branding” of Youth Not Work of Organized Group

The school board today closed its investigation of the alleged branding of a Jewish youth with a report that there was no evidence of “organized activity, either within the school or outside, directed against any racial or religious group.”

A subcommittee’s findings on charges by Melvin Bridge, 14, that classmates at Gwynn’s Falls Junior High School had scratched an “H” (for Hebrew) on his neck were adopted by the board. The report said that a group of boys had inked swastikas on “several other boys of different religious and racial groups” but that there was no evidence either by the boys or Bridge that the mark on his neck was made at the time. The board approved suspension of 18 boys who participated in a fight following the alleged branding but said they might take provisional examinations next fall for promotion.

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