Should Northwest Prep be declared a public nuisance?

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. -- Northwest Prep Academy was back in the spotlight.

Sources told WREG some officials wanted to see the school declared a public nuisance and shut down.

Most recently the school came under fire after several students were caught on camera attacking someone at the BP gas station just a few feet from the school.

Some said this school was full of troubled kids.

Some were kicked out of other Shelby County Schools while others have even served time in prison.

Now some believed the community was paying too high a price for this school.

For these kids, the picturesque Midtown school was their last change to stay in school and out of trouble.

Lately, however it doesn't seem to be working.

WREG uncovered more than 150 reported crimes within a half mile of the school in the last year.

Most recently the attack at the BP gas station.

Sources told WREG some officials wanted to see it declared a public nuisance and shut down.

Mayor A C Wharton said he wasn't sure that was the right move.

"It is a problem. I will not brush it under the rug," Wharton explained. "But I wouldn’t go to far as to say we need to close the school."

A dozen people have been charged in the BP attack.

Just yesterday Cordero Ragland was charged with aggravated riot.

Business owners in the area had varying views on the issue.

Some said shut it down while other said they needed to use resources to solve the problem.

Mayor Wharton agreed with that school of thought.

"I don’t want to indict all of them," Wharton said. "I think it would be overly drastic to say let’s shut it down, or move it."

So was the District Attorney's Office considering this request?

We asked, and a spokesmen said they wouldn't confirm or deny that they were investigating.

The school system gave the same answer.

Business owners told WREG they needed to stand together and show these kids they won't put up with crime and bad behavior.

In the mean time, they said they will wait and see what the DA's office decided.

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