Elementary school kids arrested for failing to break up fight

As many as ten children, ages six to 11, were handcuffed and arrested at their elementary school by Murfreesboro police on April 15. They were released later that day, but parents and community members remain outraged.

    2016/04/21

NSFW    MURFREESBORO, TENNESSEE — As many as ten students all under the age of 11 were handcuffed and arrested by police officers at their elementary school on Friday. The reason: they failed to intervene in a fight.

Murfreesboro police report the arrests stems from a schoolyard fight that had taken place during a heated basketball game a few days prior. The students arrested were not believed to be actively involved in the fight, and parents of some of the students claim their children weren't present at the time of the incident.

A video of the fight somehow made its way to police, and for the children's "failure to make a reasonable effort to prevent" the fight from going down, they were handcuffed and arrested at their school on April 15. According to parents of the students, at least ten kids were charged with criminal responsibility for conduct of another, under the Tennessee criminal offense code.

The children didn't remain in police custody for long, but the overreaction by the cops was enough to trigger community outrage, with five of the children being black. Zacchaeus Crawford, a parent of three of the black children arrested, claims his son was home sick that day, and one of his two daughters taken into police custody wasn't even at the basketball court that day.
Zacchaeus Crawford, father of three of the children arrested by Murfreesboro officers, says his two daughters and son are all under the age of 11. HELEN COMER / DNJ
Zacchaeus Crawford, father of three of the children arrested by Murfreesboro officers, says his two daughters and son are all under the age of 11. HELEN COMER / DNJ
Murfreesboro Police Chief Karl Durr has been quoted as saying the incident was an opportunity to
Murfreesboro Police Chief Karl Durr has been quoted as saying the incident was an opportunity to "make things better so they don't happen again." MURFREESBORO POLICE
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