SalemNews.com, Salem, MA

Local News

March 21, 2012

Witchcraft Heights hit hard by tragedy

SALEM — Witchcraft Heights Elementary School has been reaching out to students and staff since the violent incident Sunday night at the Salem Heights apartment building.

Tanicia Goodwin, 25, has been charged with slashing the throats of her two young children and setting their apartment on fire in a murder attempt.

Her son, Jamaal Goodwin, 8, a first-grader at Witchcraft, remains in critical condition at Children's Hospital Boston, according to a family member. His younger sister is also at the hospital, reportedly in stable condition.

Witchcraft Principal Mark Higgins and teachers spoke with students the day after the incident. Letters were sent home. Outside counselors were called.

This incident hit Witchcraft especially hard because it has 14 students who live in Salem Heights, a large apartment building on Pope Street. Many had to flee the building Sunday night. Many know Jamaal.

On Monday, Higgins and staff members gathered the Salem Heights children into a conference room to speak to them as a group.

"We have more than a dozen families who live up there, so they're indirectly impacted," Higgins said.

"It was more of a chance just to share with them that we know what they went through," the principal said, "and we're here to support them, that they're safe at the school and there are people here to help them."

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