Shots fired, PD window shattered
Wednesday, October 16, 2013 1:00 AM
Shots fired and a bottle hurled through the back window of a patrol car prompted Philadelphia Police to call for backup from the Sheriff's Office nearly two weekends ago in a late-nite near-riot on Martin Luther King Drive, The Neshoba Democrat has learned.
Assistant Philadelphia Police Chief Julian Greer said officers on Saturday, Oct. 5 responded initially to a reported fight in progress near the football field at the old Booker T. Washington School.
Greer said when officers arrived there "appeared to be a big gathering of people" across the street near a house where loud music was playing.
While officers were inside the house investigating the source of the loud music, they heard shots being fired outside, Greer said.
"Somebody threw a bottle through the back of the patrol car window," he said. "There was such a large crowd to disperse, that they called for the county to come and assist."
According to 911 records, the first call came in at 11:47 p.m. requesting EMS on Martin Luther King Drive.
The second call came in at 11:51 p.m. reporting vandalism and shots being fired on Martin Luther King Drive, followed by a third call at 11:51 p.m. from the police department requesting assistance from Neshoba Sheriff's office.
Sheriff Tommy Waddell said every deputy available responded to assist Philadelphia police.
"We received a call from 911 that the city needed assistance and back up because shots had been fired," Waddell said.
"They needed us for back up. When deputies arrived, the officers were outside the house."
The crowd dispersed after the deputies from Neshoba County and other police officers arrived on scene, he said.
"There were about 12 officers there," Waddell said.
No arrests were made.
This was the second time this year that the police department has requested assistance from sheriff's deputies in regards to shooting incidents.
Mayor James A. Young initially denied the incident but when confronted with the 911 information spoke to the issue.
Since the start of summer there have been 12 shooting incidents inside the city, including the one near the Head Start Center on Carver Avenue Monday morning. (See story, page 1).
Among the latest was on Sept. 24 when an unmarked Philadelphia police cruiser was struck by a single bullet while Drug Enforcement Officer Tavaras Smith was in pursuit of a vehicle after trying to make a traffic stop. He was not injured.
The shots came from a third person outside the chase.
The pastor and several members of Goodway Baptist Church pleaded with the Philadelphia Mayor and Board of Aldermen for a second time in July to increase police protection in their neighborhood along Atkins Street where two men were shot outside a nearby popular gathering place known as Curlee's.
Pastor W. C. Rush and others displayed several beer and liquor bottles on a mat in the boardroom, telling aldermen that they were picked up in the church's parking lot.
He said the bottles and cans were "proof" of what was going on at the establishment, which is owned by Curlee Connors.
In July 2011, Rush and other members of the church also appeared before the then-Mayor and Board of Aldermen.
Th group complained about activity at the nearby gathering place and subsequent crime in the area and begged the board for extra patrol.
"We were here in 2011," Rush said, "and a few things got handled for a little while and then somebody dropped the ball."