Police search for roving teens responsible for downtown assaults
LOUISVILLE, KY (WAVE) - Police are searching for a group of teens accused of several violent and damaging incidents in downtown Louisville.
Louisville Metro Chief Steve Conrad says at least six people were assaulted Saturday night within a span of two hours. Some were taken to University Hospital for treatment. Some of the victims were listed in serious condition.
Conrad said about 200 teens had gathered at Waterfront Park. Some of them, the Chief said, started trouble. LMPD officers responded to numerous calls that a group of 10 to 15 male teenagers ranging from juveniles to adults were starting fights and robberies.
Police say a 13-year-old girl was robbed by the group. A man stepped in to help. That's when police say he was beaten.
WAVE 3 News also spoke with Jean and Jim Henry, husband and wife. Jean told us her husband was also jumped and beaten on the bridge as she and their two granddaughters, 4 and 7 watched. Jim suffered bruised ribs, and a concussion. Their police report was filed Sunday morning, they said.
"I asked people to please help us and please call 911 and my grand daughters were really upset and so was I," Henry told WAVE 3 News.
The violence then spread through out the city
"I want to stress that this situation was not common for Waterfront. It was not common for downtown Louisville and as a matter of fact it is not common for any neighborhood in our community," said LMPD Chief Steve Conrad.
The teens left the park, police said, and went to Baders gas station on 1st and Jefferson Streets where they assaulted a woman inside the store.
"They were ambushing us so bad, that they hit my co-worker in the head a couple of times," the clerk recalled. The employee said she and a co-worker were tying to keep the doors of the gas stations closed, but there were too many teens.Once inside she said, they grabbed whatever handful of merchandise they could.
The clerk then saw the mob turn on a mother driving by, trashing her car, and beating her- also in front of her kids.
"They beat her up so bad, that we brought her in, cleaned her up, and she had to go to the hospital. She had to get stitches, so we don't even know if she's even ok at this point right now," the employee said.
According to officers, they also assaulted a man on 6th Street and Broadway.
Police chief Steve Conrad says police were chasing reports until 9:45 p.m. He stopped short of connecting them all and says several units were out patrolling.
"With that many kids moving out in a number of directions going south from Waterfront Park it was a challenge for officer to be everywhere where we were seeing a problem," he said.
The chief claims the city is safe.
"Last night was not the rule. It was the exception to the normal experience we see at Waterfront Park," he stated.
Jean Henry knits, meanwhile to calm her nerves and is saddened by having to calm those of her grand children as well.
"I think the thing that hurts the most is that my grand daughters witnessed that, and they were traumatized," Henry said.
One arrest has been made in connection to these incidents. Police said they are gathering information and asking victims to come forward.
Chief Conrad said law enforcement has taken steps to ensure their presence downtown and at Waterfront Park.
Anyone with information on these crimes should call the anonymous tip line at 574-LMPD.
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