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Unruly Crowd In Newtown Leads To Arrests

Sarasota Police attempted to control a crowd of 100 people and when an officer tried to arrest a man for urinating in public, things got out of hand.

A crowd of about 100 people spilling onto Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Way overnight Sunday turned unruly resulting in several arrests by Sarasota Police. 

Police attempted to control the crowd at 3 a.m. in the 1900 block of MLK Way in Sarasota's Newtown where people were in the street and officers attempted to get them back onto the sidewalk, according to Sarasota Police. 

Officers observed two men urinating in full view of them and the public, and when an officer attempted to talk to one of the suspects, Jaymes Smith, Smith attempted to run away into the crowd, but the officer caught up with Smith and restrained the man, according to police.

At that time, the crowd surrounded the officer when another man, Jarred Harington, grabbed Smith in a bear hug to prevent the officer from handcuffing Smith, according to police. 

A third man, Desmond Smith, grabbed the officer from behind to separate the officer from Jaymes Smith, then another man Devotae Williams tried to get in between Jaymes Smith and the officer and punched the officer, according to police. 

Another officer pulled Harington off of Jaymes Smith and pushed Harington away from the other officer attempting the arrest, according to police. 

Harrington then forcefully pushed that officer with both hands, prompting the crowd to close in on that officer when he attempted to arrest Harrington, according to police.

In his report, the officer, whom Sarasota Police have not identified either of the officers involved, wrote that he "swung my right hand while holding my flashlight to clear the danger in front of me and the tip of the light struck the defendant (Harrington) on the bridge of his nose."

Harrington is charged with battery on a law enforcement officer, resisting an officer with violence and resisting arrest without violence, according to police. Harrington was treated at Sarasota Memorial Hospital before being transported to Sarasota County Jail. 

Desmond Smith and Williams are both charged with battery on a law enforcement officer, according to police. Desmond Smith faces an additional charge for violating probation for a cocaine sale, according to the Sarasota County Sheriff's inmate charge report. Jaymes Smith was charged for urinating in public and resisting arrest without violence, according to police.

Lucena Winberg January 21, 2013 at 02:04 PM
What on earth are 100 people doing out on the street at 3 am on Monday morning! I hope the officers had time to call in backup. No one should be hitting, pushing or holding a police officer for any reason. That is assault.
Ronald Smith January 21, 2013 at 02:44 PM
I heard of no announced events in Newtown other than maybe they are celebrating MLK day. Strange. No officers should ever be assaulted, if any others were involved they should be arrested as well.
John Bello January 21, 2013 at 05:27 PM
.... Newtowns day is our night. I can't imagine being a cop sent in to control a crowd in Newtown at night. Give the Sarasota police an M1 tank for Newtown patrols.
nancy January 21, 2013 at 06:34 PM
Well Willie Shaw, how are you going to use your considerable talent in getting the crime in your neighborhood under control? Your talents as commissioner and the talents of those admirable, committed folks in Newtown get things done. So well organized and successful at obtaining considerable monies for new housing, new stores, new store fronts, numerous 'help' organizations now there, new library, $40 million plus for Booker High remodel, lots of money for sidewalks to Booker High and the incredible community center at 301 and Myrtle, and more!. HOW ARE YOU GOING TO TACKLE this constant crime wave in your hood? Refer to Kennedy the author? While you're at it, please tackle the considerable constant crime on North Trail. You and groups will surely reduce or hopefully eliminate such items because you're INVOLVED, constantly pepper the powers that be, are committed to change - quite unlike the residents and community organization of Indian Beach and Sapphire Shores, your neighbors to the west of MLK.
Dee Lindsay January 21, 2013 at 08:43 PM
It has been like this forever. The good citizens of SRQ have been turning a blind eye and a deaf ear to the flash mobs of Newtown forever. The only mentions that make the news is when NYT smells blood in the water and begins to salivate over thr chance to criticize SPD.

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