THOUSANDS of people yesterday thronged Hatcliffe Number 1 Primary School where two Grade 5 pupils reportedly turned into baboons after being given rings and bracelets by their class teacher.
Some scaled the pre-cast wall while others climbed up trees to catch a glimpse of the pupils.
Police officers battled to control the crowd that was baying for the teacher's blood.
Other teachers, the two minors and their parents were driven to Borrowdale Police Station.
Residents demanded that the school headmaster, identified as Ms Khoza, release the teacher, who was only identified as Mr Bhuru, so that they could deal with him.
Some parents immediately withdrew their children from the school.
Two women traded blows after one accused the other of pulling her in the melee.
The pair was immediately arrested.
People at the school said the incident happened after the teacher gave the two minors (names withheld) white bracelets and rings on Wednesday.
"They were locked in the class' storeroom by Mr Bhuru who went to his house during the break. He forced them to wear the rings and bracelets saying it would make them brilliant in school," the sources said.
"He stopped them from going for break and said he would open the door for them afterwards. While inside, we peeped through the window and were surprised to see the other child had bitten off his nails and fingertips.
"He started writing on the window of the storeroom with the blood oozing from his fingers before he started sucking it off his hands. At the same time, they developed hairs on their hands and had long canine teeth.
"The teacher returned and we saw he had developed scales like those of a fish."
Mr Masimba Charubva expressed concern over the surge in Satanism scares in schools.
"Many things have been happening of late regarding the issue of Satanism. The ministry must do something about it because we are scared something worse will happen to our children.
"Government as a whole must do something over these new churches. We are no-longer feeling comfortable with the rate the so-called prophets have been performing miracles," he said.
Harare provincial police spokesperson Assistant Inspector Tariro Dube confirmed the skirmishes.
"It started after pupils raised speculations that a teacher gave the pupils bangles from UFI. The teacher said he gave them as motivation before various versions of the incident started generating from the spectators.
"Parents got wind of that and wanted to assault the teacher before the headmistress intervened and hid him. The police took parents and the teacher for discussions."
She said the situation at the school was, however, back to normal.
Asst Insp Dube said a police officer was injured after riot police was called to disperse the crowds.
"People must desist from creating alarm since it could cause a stampede. The police reaction team was called in and one police officer was injured while trying to disperse the crowd," she said.
However, Harare provincial education director Mr Edward Shumba said he could not comment on the matter because his office had not received the report.