Boston

13 arrested in 2 large-scale fights on violent weekend in Boston

The 13 youths arrested near movie theaters in two parts of the city were expected to be arraigned in Boston Juvenile Court Monday

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Thirteen youths, ranging in age from 12 to 17, were arrested following two major fights in Boston on Sunday — one at the South Bay shopping center in Dorchester and another downtown, the city's police department announced Monday.

The two incidents, both near movie theaters, were part of a wider theme of "public disorder" among young people at large events over the weekend, Boston Police Commissioner Michael Cox said Monday, referring also to a shooting that left eight people wounded near a Caribbean festival Saturday morning and another fight at Saint Anthony's Feast in the North End.

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After a violent weekend in Boston, the city's police commissioner is pleading for parents to keep tabs on their children.

Each incident involved "a lot of young people, no supervision, a lot of large crowds and ultimately we have to come in and supervise with arrests," Cox said.

Boston police responded Sunday afternoon to South Bay for a report of a fight involving a large group of people, and when they arrived, they saw a "large group of juveniles causing disturbances," the department said.

Several of them wouldn't leave and were confrontational with police, and some of them allegedly began to assault officers. Multiple districts and state police were called in for help. Boston police said the arrests were made shortly before 5 p.m.

13 youths were arrested in total across both incidents.

Later Sunday night, around 11 p.m., there was a report of another fight involving a large group of teens near the corner of Washington Street and Avery Street. Police officers said they asked the group to disperse, but they refused, and continued to block traffic in the area. One juvenile even jumped onto the roof of a car and stomped on it, police said.

While police were trying to break up multiple fights, the group shouted obscenities at the officers and began assaulting them, the department said.

One police officer was pushed to the ground before being punched and kicked by the group. Another officer who jumped in to help was put into a chokehold by one of the teens, officials added.

Five teens were arrested during that incident.

The Boston Globe said an email alert sent out after 11 p.m. by nearby Emerson College said the disturbance was still going on and had moved to the intersection of Washington and Avery streets.

Cox asked parents to keep tabs on their children and "do your best as we go back to school here."

Pastor Steven Neville of Dorchester's Metropolitan Bapist Church spent Sunday services preaching peace.

"We try and create some normalcy and create an environment in which they can see this is what community is, this is how we do things, this is what we get together for," he said.

He hopes community-based solutions and less access to lethal weapons will eventually help curb the violence.

Cox also pointed to the widespread availability of guns when discussing what enabled some of the weekend's violence.

The South Bay shopping center has been the site of multiple violent incidents recently.

Four teens were arrested after they allegedly randomly attacked a person there on Wednesday, Aug. 17. The three boys and one girl -- all 13 years old -- were facing charges including assault and battery, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest.

In another incident at the beginning of the month, six teenagers were arrested after allegedly attacking police officers, throwing rocks and smashing cruiser windows at the shopping center.

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