Grand Jury no-bills 17-year-old for bat attack
Polk County Enterprise, June 3, 2007
LIVINGSTON — The Polk County grand jury declined to indict a 17-year-old high school student for his role in a large physical altercation among several students at a residence on Old Woodville Road on April 7.
Joe Martin, a prosecutor with the Polk County District Attorney's office, presented the case to the grand jury during a May session, but the panel decided not to indict the lone adult involved in the fight.
Some of the teens had gathered at the house for a social event, and another group of boys came to the house and were angry about a dispute over a girl, witnesses said.
The man was not arrested in connection with the incident.
Misdemeanor charges may be filed against the man, and two juveniles face charges in connection with the disturbance that involved several teens, investigators said.
Witnesses said the fight resulted from a disagreement among several teens boys over a girl.
"We were lucky no one was permanently injured or killed from this incident," Martin said.
One of the people was hit in the head with a baseball bat but has recovered since the fight, Martin said.
Due to confidentiality of medical records, there is no verifiable data on how many of those involved sought medical treatment for injuries in the incident, but several witnesses said three or four teens were treated the night of the incident or the following day when parents saw wounds from the fight.
Officers from several law enforcement agencies responded to a 911 call from one teenager at the scene of the incident and the Polk County Sheriff's Office investigated the incident.
Detectives took statements from more than 20 people, most of them high school students, in connection with the incident.
Martin added that consumption of alcohol played a role in the incident.
"I hope these young men take a lesson from this incident and learn that tempers, alcohol and hormones can be a deadly combination," Martin said.