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Wednesday, December 6, 2023

4 Charged In Alabama Riverfront Brawl


4 folks have turned themselves in to the police and have been charged with assault in reference to a brawl that broke out alongside the waterfront in Montgomery, Ala., final weekend, officers mentioned, because the investigation into the racially charged melee continues.

The arrests got here days after a gaggle of white boaters attacked a Black riverboat cruise captain on Saturday. Warrants for 3 of the boaters had been issued on Tuesday, and the Montgomery police had requested them throughout a information convention to return ahead.

Allen Todd, 23, and Zachary Shipman, 25, had been in custody of the Montgomery police as of Wednesday, the police mentioned, and every was charged with one depend of third-degree assault, a misdemeanor. A 3rd man, Richard Roberts, 48, turned himself in on Tuesday and was charged with two counts of third-degree assault. All three have posted bail, officers mentioned.

On Thursday, Mary Todd, 21, turned herself in and was additionally charged with third diploma assault, the police mentioned. She was being held for 12 hours, in line with courtroom information.

The misdemeanor assault is penalized by a nice of as much as $6,000 and as much as one yr in jail. The 4 accused, all of whom are white, are scheduled for arraignment on Sept. 1.

The Montgomery police mentioned on Thursday that no different fees had been levied, however extra might come. Whereas the battle seemed to be largely down racial strains, the police wouldn’t pursue hate crime fees, they mentioned. Additionally they won’t pursue fees of inciting a riot.

The weekend’s violent scene was captured on video by a number of bystanders and drew a big social media response, together with cartoons, TikTok movies, a music and re-enactments. Most of the movies, which provide a number of angles and vantage factors of the incident, are actually part of the police investigation, mentioned Chief Darryl J. Albert of the Montgomery Police.

The altercation started on the metropolis’s in style Riverfront Park after a pontoon boat docked in an area designated for the Harriott II, a riverboat cruise that was coming back from a visit up the Alabama River. For 45 minutes, the captain of the Harriott II instructed the pontoon boat by way of the general public announcement system to maneuver out of the way in which, however to no avail. As an alternative, the white boaters responded with “gestures, curse phrases and taunting,” Chief Albert mentioned at a information convention on Tuesday.

At that time, Damien Pickett, a co-captain of the Harriott, was given a journey on a small boat to the dock so he might discuss to the pontoon house owners. When Mr. Pickett, who’s Black, tried to maneuver the pontoon, the house owners of the boat confronted and attacked him. Members of the Harriott’s crew and bystanders got here to Mr. Pickett’s protection, and a melee broke out. One man was seen on video wielding a folding chair to make use of in opposition to the boaters.

Mr. Pickett and an unnamed 16-year-old male, who had taken Mr. Pickett to the dock, had been injured within the brawl.

The dock’s historical past has develop into part of the broader dialog across the battle and its racial overtones: The altercation occurred on the identical dock the place enslaved Africans arrived by steamboat to be bought within the middle of city.


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