HERCULES -- A vicious fight at Hercules High School on Wednesday has drawn attention after it was learned that one of the students involved may possibly identify as transgender.

Sgt. Ruben Rodriguez with the Hercules Police Department said the altercation, between four 16-year-old students, began around 1:42 p.m. when a male student punched a girl for unknown reasons. Two other girls then intervened and the boy threw one of them on the ground, Rodriguez added.

Before campus security came in to break up the fight, one of the girls punched the boy. Two of the teens had minor scratches and a third complained of pain to her wrist.

Rodriguez said two of the female students indicated they wanted to press charges for battery, and the boy wanted to do the same against the girl who punched him.

City spokeswoman Margaret Roberts said there was an unconfirmed report that the male student involved in the fight identifies as transgender. Police on Thursday would not confirm that report, nor did they indicate the fight was a hate crime.

Rodriguez said all four students have been suspended, though he did not say for how long. A report has been sent to the Contra Costa County Juvenile District Attorney's Office for review.


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A school spokesperson was not immediately available for comment. In a video uploaded to YouTube by someone who witnessed the fight, a throng of students gathered as the combatants ran around a courtyard, throwing punches and pulling clothes and hair, until eventually one of the female students was knocked to the ground. It is unknown if teachers or school administrators were present at the time of the fight.

After one of the girls was pushed to the ground in the video, the campus security guard stepped in to intervene, separating the teens.

"Since I have been here, I have not seen anything like this," Roberts said.

Police said Thursday afternoon they did not have a copy of the video, but they were aware that the footage had been making the rounds on the Internet.

Check back for updates.

Contact Katie Nelson at knelson@bayareanewsgroup.com and follow her at Twitter.com/katienelson210.