UPDATE: JACKSONVILLE (KYTX) – Two people are in custody, and more arrest are expected after a video surfaced capturing an attack a local Taco Bell.
Police Detective Greg Compton made the first two arrests in the fight case from Sunday May 11th. Several more arrests are expected in the near future and at this point the department has identified most of the participants in the assault.
The first two subjects were charged with Assault Class A which means that bodily injury occurred during the assault. At least one other suspect will be charged with the same offense and others will be charged with Disorderly Conduct.
Derrick Tatum, age 18 of Jacksonville and Deverick Tatum, also 18 and of Jacksonville were arrested, arraigned and charged with Class A Assault. They were then transferred to the Cherokee County jail.
We expect to make several more arrests as the case develops and will release information as it becomes available.
UPDATE: JACKSONVILLE (KYTX) – Jacksonville Chief of Police Reece Daniel has released a statement following a brutal attack that was caught on camera at a local Taco Bell.
Despite a seven second video that has gone viral that purports to show several black males stomping and hitting a lone white male at a local restaurant our department did an initial investigation prior to talking to the media.
At this point we anticipate filing charges against several people ranging from Disorderly Conduct to Assault on subjects both White and Black. While the tape clearly shows an assault taking place there are many other factors and actions that we must investigate.
As the investigation progresses we will release names and ages of the various suspects and the charges we will be filing. We have already made one arrest close to the scene for DWI on a suspect who was trying to escape.
One thing I want to be clear about is that this was not a roaming band of black males assaulting white males and this incident was precipitated by one of the White suspects. Alcohol was also involved.
While I personally find it cowardly that several people were involved in the assault on the young man on the ground please let me point out that this seven second video contains no audio so we have no way of knowing what the male on the ground was saying at the time or if he was making the problem worse. Officers talked to him at the scene and he refused to file any charges. This victim had two friends with him.
One was engaged in a fight off camera and the other was leaving the scene.
For those in the initial off camera fights and disturbances we anticipate filing Disorderly Conduct charges and for those involved in the stomping we are going to file Assault charges.
People need to know that this is not Ferguson, Chicago or any other place. It is Jacksonville Texas and this entire episode could easily have been avoided had it not been for alcohol and loose mouths. It was not a riot and was broken up by the arrival of the police. We received the initial call at 12:32am and our first unit arrived at 12:33am. A one minute response time.
I also know that many people, with little or no facts at their disposal have tried to make this into something it is not. Our officers handle fights on almost a daily basis and they did an excellent job of breaking this one up and doing the proper follow-up.
Once we have everyone identified and charged with the proper charge we will release further information. Until then we will follow our standard procedure and do a thorough investigation.
"Wow," says one viewer.
This is common reaction from people at a Jacksonville Taco Bell following this brutal attack viewed thousands of time on Facebook.
"This is terrible..." says one viewer.
Another guy reacts after seeing the video for the first time. In it appears to be nearly ten men kicking and punching another man as he's down on the ground.
Chedrick Boyd is a clerk at the Food Fast across the street.
He says crime is no stranger to the area.
"I was robbed the first two weeks at gunpoint," said Boyd.
"When I saw the video I was like, oh man, dude getting a beat down but then after I heard what happened I was like oh well you know," said Boyd.
Boyd says customers came in today showing the video and talking about how the fight started which is one reason Boyd says--he doesn't feel so sorry.
"Apparently he called somebody the "N" word," said Boyd.
I took my questions to the Jacksonville Police Department and they tell me the incident is still under investigation and they're working to identify those involved.
In the meantime-- those living in the area say they want answers.
"I'd like to find out more about it you know--find out who did it.."
Jacksonville police say they are planning to release more information tomorrow morning.
We will continue to bring you the latest in this investigation.