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Teen is arrested in mob fight



Published: Thu, October 19, 2006 @ 12:00 a.m.



Police arrested one teenage boy who urged on the crowd and gave them a hard time.

By JOHN W. GOODWIN JR.

VINDICATOR TRUMBULL STAFF

YOUNGSTOWN -- City police arrested a 17-year-old boy in what they say could have become a riot after school let out on the city's North Side.

Police Sgt. Gerard Slattery said two Youngstown police officers on routine patrol in the Fairgreen and Belmont avenues area came across about 100 juveniles involved in a large fight. Officers called for backup and tried to break up the melee about 4 p.m.

Slattery said the ages of kids who appeared to be involved in the episode ranged from junior high school through high school. He said officers are not sure what started the fight but believe it was over something that started brewing earlier in the day.

"It looks like it started over a mixture of school stuff and apparently just snowballed after that," he said.

Six officers responded to the scene in an attempt to calm the large crowd.

The 17-year-old, however, made it difficult for officers to get the crowd under control, Slattery said.

What he's accused of

The teenager refused to calm down, challenged police officers and encouraged the crowd to turn on the officers at the scene, Slattery said.

"He was really boisterous and inciting the violence," he said. "This could have easily turned into a riot, but fortunately we were able to quickly get the situation under control."

Slattery said the boy, whose name was not released, struggled with and ran from police but was eventually taken into custody. He will be charged with inciting violence and resisting arrest.

The fight caused a nearby Dollar General store to close for a short time until officers got the situation under control.

A manager at the store wouldn't say if any of the kids involved in the fight had been inside the store.

jgoodwin@vindy.com




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