Wednesday, July 07, 2010

'This Type of Conduct is Not Supposed to Happen in Civil Society'

This "type of conduct" is subhuman savagery showing no respect for the law, other people or your children. This is the crap we've come to expect from Palestinians attacking Israelis, not Americans ambushing other Americans.
First responders from the Alton Fire Department and five officers from the Alton Police Department were attacked by a crowd of several hundred people in the Oakwood Housing Complex who shot large bottle rockets at them. The incidents occurred late Sunday and early Monday in the 700 and 800 blocks of Oakwood.

"I'm so angry," said Alton Police Chief David Hayes. "This type of conduct is not supposed to happen in civil society. This was obviously intended to be entertainment for the crowd."

Hayes added that the crowd's actions were "despicable and turn my stomach."

The confrontations began at 10:20 p.m. and within the 40 minutes it took to resolve the first incident, police were attacked three times. It started when a firetruck was dispatched to extinguish a Dumpster fire in the 700 block of Oakwood and was immediately attacked by the crowd shooting and throwing fireworks at them.

According to two police reports, Patrolman First Class Walter Wetzstein and several other officers already were on their way to the scene because of the "large amounts of fireworks being set off at that location." Both reports stated that in the past, fires have been set to "lure the fire department out so they could be attacked by fireworks."

When officers arrived, they too were attacked "by the mob" with bottle rockets thrown from behind buildings. Police responded with pepper-ball guns and at one point pursued attackers in an attempt to restore order. Officers left when firefighters were able to extinguish the Dumpster fire but quickly returned to the housing complex because of reports of people shot or injured in the 800 block of Oakwood. Police did not find anyone injured but again were attacked by fireworks and again deployed pepper-ball guns to prevent attacks.

Officers were attacked a third time in the 700 block of Oakwood when they responded to reports of a truck fire; that turned out to be a box on fire. Officers had to leave when their pepper-ball guns were out of ammunition.

At 12:29 a.m. July 5, police and fire personnel again were dispatched to the Oakwood Housing complex for a Dumpster fire in the 800 block of Oakwood. Officers were attacked with bottle rockets and again deployed pepper-ball guns. When the fire department put out the fire, police requested the Dumpster in the 900 block be soaked down in an attempt to prevent it from being set on fire. Officers left at that time to respond to other calls.

"The Fourth of July is always a very busy time for us because of fireworks. It's unfortunate that resources were tied up for a couple of hours like this" when the rest of the city might have needed them, Hayes said.

The city has taken a more proactive approach this year in curtailing the private use of fireworks. The Telegraph printed a letter from Mayor Tom Hoechst stating that fireworks were illegal in Illinois. Individuals found to have them or be discharging them would receive a non-traffic citation and would have to appear before a judge and ordered to pay a fine. If they failed to do so, a warrant would be issued for their arrest.

"The sad reality is there were likely a number of adults who participated or were spectators. They're just showing their kids 'this is the way we have fun on the Fourth of July.' It speaks to the poor parenting skills they have," Hayes said.

The police are reviewing videotapes to see how they can follow up with charges.
Just imagine if police and firemen failed to respond to calls. The Justice Department would have already launched a probe into civil rights violations of the poor oppressed people of the housing projects.

Via Ironic Surrealism and Fox.

Linked at Instapundit. Thanks!

Update: Gateway Pundit has a video report.

Some thoughts from Mary Katharine Ham.
They were attacked three times over several hours, lured on separate false reports of shootings and fires. This kind of thing poses a risk not only to police, but to the members of this community who have real problems, to which cops will be less able to quickly respond in the future. It's a greater threat to the public and the Republic than, say, a handful of rude signs at a political rally, but there will be no national coverage. Perhaps if this group organized as an anti-tax coalition, they'd get more coverage of their shenanigans.

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