Residents in a Mississippi town are concerned about their safety and that of other park-users after a planned fight occurred at a sports complex, leading to the arrests of four women.
On March 6, police arrived at Goldin Sports Complex in Gulfport to find a large group of people brawling. The crowd dispersed once police arrived, however footage the fight was posted on various social media sites, which allowed police to identify the four women who were primarily involved.
Calister Danelle Blackmon, Karisma Shanae Blackmon, Quanitry Tinishae Reid, and Iysha Cheryl Kenya Powell were arrested on disturbing the peace charges, and all of the women turned themselves in after being contacted by police.
According to Gulfport police Sgt. Damon McDaniel, complexes such as the Goldin Sports Complex are common places for these planned fights because of their large size, though the use of these public venues for planned fights is disconcerting to other users of the park.
Joe Harrison coaches a travel baseball team that often uses the complex for practices and games and says he received some calls from anxious parents who learned about the incident, and he also expressed concern.
“I wish people would just realize these are kids from four years old all the way to 13 years old out here, and anything can happen. A stray bullet or anything like that. It’s scary.”
Douglas Reid, another Gulfport resident, voiced his worry about the lack of police presence throughout the park, saying, “My thing is I run a lot out here about 9 or 9:30 at night, and that’s just unsafe for the residents over here. There’s not a lot of police presence. You hardly every see a police officer driving down the streets of Prudie Circle, and it’s just unsafe.”
Sgt. McDaniel said that police are aware that Goldin Sports Complex is a popular place for these fights to occur, however he says the police force believes it is the people who are having these fights that are the problem, not the park itself.
Gulfport police are currently trying to identify other people in the video of the fight, and according to Sgt. McDaniel, more arrests may be made if police are successful in identifying others.