5 arrested, up to 300 involved in Athens melee

Saturday, Jan. 7, 2012 6:24 AM
Last updated 6:03 PM
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ATHENS, Ga. — Officers from several law enforcement agencies quelled a near-riot Thursday night at an apartment complex on Athens’ Eastside and arrested five people, Athens-Clarke police said.

The melee involved up to 300 people and apparently continued a series of fights that started a few days ago when some people called a teen’s brother a homosexual, according to police.

The brother recently died from complications due to AIDS, according to a woman whose daughter attends Cedar Shoals High School with the teen.

Police responded to Athens Gardens Apartments off Lexington Road about 6:30 p.m. Thursday on a report of a large altercation, and the first arriving officer saw 50 to 70 people fighting each other, police said.

Most of the combatants scattered when the officer activated his patrol car’s lights and siren, but a boy remained in the road, screaming to re-ignite the violence, according to police.

The officer grabbed the 14-year-old boy’s shoulders and attempted to calm him down, but he punched the officer several times while attempting to get away, police said.

Then boy’s sister attacked the officer, kicking his legs and punching his chest, police said.

As officers handcuffed the woman, a crowd gathered around them, and the woman started to curse and shout racial epithets at the officers, police said.

“At this point, there were 200-300 subjects in the streets with most of them being disorderly or actively fighting,” an officer wrote in a report.

More than 20 officers from the Athens-Clarke, University of Georgia and Winterville police departments helped restore order, along with Clarke County sheriff’s deputies and Georgia State Patrol troopers, police said.

The woman tried to kick out a patrol car’s window, and officers later found a knife in the back seat, police said.

The apartment complex was so clogged with police cars that many officers had to park on Lexington Road and run to the scene, police said.

The 14-year-old boy who punched the officer was charged with riot, disorderly conduct, simple battery on a police officer and obstruction, and was taken to the Gainesville Regional Youth Detention Center, police said.

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fatboyhog
1987
Points
fatboyhog 01/07/12 - 08:34 am
0
0
I wonder what the public's

I wonder what the public's response would have been if the police just sealed off the area and let them fight to the death. Some people just have no skills at resolving conflict. I'm glad that no officers were hurt. And all this over someone "saying something" about someone else. Where's Jesse and Al to condemn this violence. You KNOW they'd have been vocal if the police shot one or more of these peaceful, law-abiding citizens.

seenitB4
88314
Points
seenitB4 01/07/12 - 08:40 am
0
0
Yep...fatboy...where are the

Yep...fatboy...where are the big boys...Jesse & Al.....tv time on this for sure.....ya dish me/ya dish my sister.....rumble -rumble ....what a waste of tax money on this melee...
If someone had been shot I'm sure the big boys would be on tv today!

copperhead
1035
Points
copperhead 01/07/12 - 09:34 am
0
0
It SEEMS these folks have

It SEEMS these folks have been hanging out with the ows bunch.

corgimom
33221
Points
corgimom 01/07/12 - 09:49 am
0
0
You never know, Jesse and Al

You never know, Jesse and Al just might show up...claiming police brutality, you know...

Can you imagine how frightening this must be to a police officer?

"and the first arriving officer saw 50 to 70 people fighting each other, police said."

belle
307
Points
belle 01/07/12 - 11:29 am
0
0
Besides the fact that this
Unpublished

Besides the fact that this story takes place in Athens, it is quite clear that the story was written by someone NOT on the staff of the Chronicle. It is clear, concise, informative and complete.

scorehouse
196
Points
scorehouse 01/07/12 - 01:00 pm
0
0
i don't believe it. no way a
Unpublished

i don't believe it. no way a group of democrats insult gays? then riot. when they get to the bottom of this, no pun intended, i'll bet this was over air jordans.

raul
5026
Points
raul 01/07/12 - 01:13 pm
0
0
I would say the crowd that

I would say the crowd that was fighting was seriously that ignorant.

scorehouse
196
Points
scorehouse 01/07/12 - 01:24 pm
0
0
not quite. what was the age
Unpublished

not quite. what was the age of the woman and what charges?

Iwannakno
1533
Points
Iwannakno 01/07/12 - 02:13 pm
0
0
Reminds me of what happened
Unpublished

Reminds me of what happened at the Cherry Tree apartments. Anyone in public housing that interferes with the police should lose their right to government assistance...notice I said assistance not lifelong pay to be a unproductive drain on society.

OJP
6798
Points
OJP 01/07/12 - 01:47 pm
0
0
Homophobia rears its ugly

Homophobia rears its ugly head again.

scorehouse
196
Points
scorehouse 01/07/12 - 01:59 pm
0
0
who would fight over someone
Unpublished

who would fight over someone calling someone else gay?i mean seriously. i'm going to call you and say leroy called my dead brother who died from aids gay so i want you to come fight leroy and his friends? say what? this is ignorant and insane!

Asitisinaug
3
Points
Asitisinaug 01/07/12 - 03:51 pm
0
0
Our great government enabled

Our great government enabled society at work.

Fatboyhog, does sound like a interesting idea...surround the area and tell anyone who needs help to come over, let the rest continue their normal daily activities.

No matter how the police act/re-act in this situation / environment, their actions will be questioned, second guessed, etc.

Craig Spinks
817
Points
Craig Spinks 01/07/12 - 07:05 pm
0
0
This article, unfortunately,

This article, unfortunately, portends our future.

Fellow posters, are you ready to stand up and deal with it?*

Asitisinaug, I know you are.

* And I'm not talking about vigilantism.

KSL
131358
Points
KSL 01/07/12 - 07:23 pm
0
0
Could it be that there is

Could it be that there is taunting of the police going on? Do they believe the police are hesitant to take the correct action to stop this needless violence for fear of the repercussions? It sounds like there should have been far more arrests.

CobaltGeorge
160975
Points
CobaltGeorge 01/07/12 - 07:30 pm
0
0
Yes KSL, like 300.

Yes KSL, like 300.

shrimp for breakfast
5460
Points
shrimp for breakfast 01/07/12 - 08:04 pm
0
0
Well then I will inject race

Well then I will inject race into the. I followed the story and the rioters were black. I don't mean it to be racist bit facts are facts.
It was a riot of BLACK people. You don't like it then too bad!

charliemanson
1
Points
charliemanson 01/07/12 - 08:11 pm
0
0
Riots like this are common in

Riots like this are common in London.

Riverman1
84963
Points
Riverman1 01/07/12 - 08:11 pm
0
0
5 arrested, 295 got away. But

5 arrested, 295 got away. But as FatBoyHog says, at least no officers were injured.

Sargebaby
4693
Points
Sargebaby 01/07/12 - 09:50 pm
0
0
Charliemanson says; "Riots

Charliemanson says; "Riots like this are common in London."

Charlie, don't look now, but we ain't in London!

raul
5026
Points
raul 01/07/12 - 10:00 pm
0
0
Charlie was trying some of

Charlie was trying some of that subtle art of deflection. LOL.

Asitisinaug
3
Points
Asitisinaug 01/08/12 - 05:46 am
0
0
Craig, you are very

Craig, you are very correct...this is almost our present and will be our future if major changes don't take place.

Unfortunately, this is way beyond the reach of law enforcement and for the most part even our educational system.

I Honestly don't know where exactly we need to start but I know it includes the need for far better parenting; well educated, caring and hardworking teachers; major changes in our government at all levels; accountability in our schools, juvenile courts and regular courts so that people know they will be held accountable for their actions. Personal responsibility must also become a part of our lives again.

We must stop enabling, especially through taxation because too many believe they should get everything at the expense of others. We as a country need to help those that can't help their selves such as the handicapped and elderly but others need to seek help from friends, family or charity instead of government handouts. We also must end policies that reward negative behavior such as more money, more EBT allowance, etc. when you have another child which you can't afford from the beginning. All of this comes back to one word...accountability.

Christian or not, if people would just follow the 10 commandments as written, there would basically be no need for any other laws in our country and this would be a much better place to live.

Additionally, in this specific situation, mob mentality will take over unless you have very strong leadership on the ground quickly from law enforcement. Even then, it is extremely difficult to correct situations such as this when they occur quickly and there is no time to prepare. About the best that can be done is call in all of the officers available, bring in a Sheriff’s bus or school busses if necessary, order the area to be cleared immediately and then start arresting people as necessary quickly for disorderly conduct, in sighting a riot, etc. as relevant. Generally speaking, If the masses see person after person being taken off in hand cuffs, the others will disperse accordingly. From there, the judicial system judges need to ensure that those arrested are dealt with so as to ensure they will think twice before failing to immediately disperse in situations such as this in the future. Anyone who has ever been in a situation such as this at an athletic event or over crowded area knows the best action to take as an individual is immediately leave the area any way necessary.

JRC2024
9085
Points
JRC2024 01/08/12 - 12:37 pm
0
0
Haki, for 300 people to get

Haki, for 300 people to get in a fight because someone says another person was a homosexual (and probably was if he died of aids) is ignorant in my opinion. And that goes for white or black. The fact still remains that you see that kind of action more in the black race-rioting-than the white. The fact also remains that the 14 year old was yelling racial slurs to the police officer when he tried to help him. If I was a police officer I would have never gone into a situation where I was the only one among 50 fighters. I would have just let them fight like they were doing until a large amount of help was there. I know I am worth more to me and my family that they are to me.

Haki
31
Points
Haki 01/08/12 - 01:02 pm
0
0
Yall have an excuse for

Yall have an excuse for EVERYTHING!

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