PHILADELPHIA (Jun. 24)
Nine members of the local branch of the Jewish Defense League have been served with criminal warrants by the Board of Education for occupying the principal’s office of Leeds Junior High School on Monday. The five adults and four youths were charged with disorderly conduct for allegedly blocking the office doors and attempting to tear the telephone from the wall. Rabbi Harold Novoseller, the group’s leader, denied the charges. He said the JDL had merely sought to present six “suggestions” for protecting students from assault and theft by “troublemakers,” including committing them to disciplinary schools, stationing policemen in the public schools and replacing “weak administrators.” The arrests were believed to be the first of JDL members here. A hearing for the five adults was scheduled for June 29. The four youths will be tried in juvenile court. Rabbi Novoseller said the JDL had acted after school authorities had allegedly failed to crack down on school violence. Principal Meyer Berkowitz said there had been no violence at the school for two months.