Jonesboro police concerned after incident requires fogger

Jonesboro police concerned after incident requires fogger
Maleke Lamar Bryant (Source: Craighead County Sheriff's Office)
Maleke Lamar Bryant (Source: Craighead County Sheriff's Office)

JONESBORO, AR (KAIT) - A large fight in the Diamond Grill parking lot led to several arrests Sunday morning.

According to the report, an off-duty Jonesboro police officer working security saw almost 30 people run out of the building into the parking lot.

The crowd began to argue, and the officer noticed a male, later identified as 20-year-old Tre'von Lamont Chew, walked away from the crowd to a yellow Mustang.

The officer saw Chew lean into the car and then heard the sound of a handgun getting ready to fire.

He then observed Chew walk toward the crowd, yelling and pointing the gun raised at eye level.

The officer then drew his weapon and demanded Chew to drop the gun. The suspect then bent over and threw the gun under the Mustang.

Chew was taken into custody for aggravated assault, carrying a weapon and disorderly conduct. The handgun was recovered.

"There was an argument inside the club that evolved in to the parking lot and it looked like he was going to settle it with the use of a gun but with the quick action of these two officers it prevented anything from going worse than it did," Jonesboro Police Chief Rick Elliott said.

However the incident did not end there, several other fights broke out in the parking lot according to the report.

All available units were called to the lot when 800 to 1,000 people filed out of the club, arguing.

Sergeant Trey Dupuy grabbed his Top Cop OC Fogger and responded to the front of the parking lot where most people were refusing to get in their vehicles even though officers were telling them to do so.

The report states several people who were originally fighting got back out of their cars to fight again.

"They were given a lawful order to disperse and leave the premises and there were some who failed to obey that lawful order," Elliott said.

This is when the sergeant deployed the fogger into the air for two seconds.

"Typically no, it is not done that often but you get situations like this that can volatile very quickly and the idea is to get the crowd moved on and get them to be compliant," Elliott said.

The report says everyone then got in their cars and left the parking lot.

At the time, the report says no officers could find anyone in the parking lot who needed medical assistance or who came forward saying they were sprayed.

"What is in these sprays is all natural, it is Cayenne pepper essentially so the body absorbs and eliminates naturally. So it burns a little bit but it is not harmful or has any long lasting effects," Elliott said.

One person, a 17 year old, in the parking lot filed a complaint from NEA Baptist Hospital claiming he was sprayed across the lower stomach.

Elliott said this is not the first time his department has had to respond to incidents at Diamond Grill.

"Over the past years there have been several incidents at this club. Right now what is concerning me is they had a least a 17 year old in this club and maybe some other people underage out there and the question is were they drinking or not," Elliott said. "I am going to look further into this matter and into the clubs business and what is going on with them and make sure they are not letting minors in the club or serving minors."

Elliott said he will be looking into the incident at the club to see if any laws have been broken.

"Bottom line is we are not going to tolerate this kind of behavior. We know some of these folks that were visiting Jonesboro were from other surrounding areas and this is a heads up if you come to town we have an expectation of your conduct and if you fail to act appropriately then we will certainly deal with it," Elliott said.

Less than 20 minutes after the original incident at the Diamond Grill parking lot, police made two more arrests.

Officer Nathan Coleman responded to the all-call for assistance at the Diamond Grill.

According to the report, when he arrived near the area, he saw a wreck on Airport Rd.

Coleman saw about 20 people standing near three cars that ran into one another.

The report states a white Crown Victoria ran into the back of a dark blue Chevrolet Malibu, which then struck the back of a maroon Nissan Sentra.

The driver of the Malibu, 19-year-old Maleke Lamar Bryant, had a suspended license.

When officers tried to place Bryant under arrest, he began resisting.

The report states all the cars were released and while officers were taking measurements, they noticed a child's backpack near the scene.

Inside the backpack, police found a pistol and a bag of crack cocaine along with two black socks and a key.

Police reviewed video from the stop and noticed someone on scene toss the bag when police arrived.

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