A crowd of about 40 people, including small children, were on hand for an incident in Jacksonville where fights spilled into the streets and a weapon was drawn early last weekend.
Officers from the Jacksonville and South Jacksonville Police Departments responded to the 400 block of South East at around 4:15 p.m. Friday in reference to a fight breaking out.
Jacksonville Police Officer Chad Moore says most of the fight had separated and broken up by the time officers arrived.
“There were still numerous people walking around the roads and front yards of some houses. When they were approached, nobody would cooperate or tell us what they saw,” says Moore.
“They did locate a juvenile victim that had been punched. He didn’t want to cooperate with who punched him. Originally there wasn’t a lot that was ascertained at the scene.”
Reports claim that after officers arrived 37-year-old Joshua Havens produced a handgun from his waistband and pointed it in the direction of someone he was arguing with. Police says there was a struggle with Havens, but he was eventually taken into custody.
A video showing the incident was put on Facebook received a “viral” reception of over 3,000 before it was taken down.
Moore says deputies are reviewing the footage and arrests will be made if people causing a crime can be identified.
The video, lasting around three minutes, clearly shows multiple children in the area at the time of the incident. Moore says this is a very dangerous situation for a child to be in.
“I’ve never really understood why you would want your small children to be exposed to that behavior, because we see how these fights can escalate from fist fights to stabbings and shootings,” says Moore.
Moore says the community and police must work together to make this area of Jacksonville a safer place.
“We get a lot of call down there like this, so we are going to keep some extra patrol down there and take zero tolerance,” says Moore.
“The neighborhood isn’t filled with bad people. There are a few houses causing all the trouble. We are asking the the neighbors to finally get tired of this and help. If they see something, they can cooperate with us and let us know what is going on. If they are active witnesses then we can prosecute these people.”
Havens was arrested for unlawful use/possession of a weapon by a felon, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct. Havens remains in custody at the Morgan County Jail.
39-year-old Kraig Mapes and 21 year old Jamale Robinson were given city ordinance citations for disorderly conduct and released.