Louisville weekend violence featured on The O'Reilly Factor
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- The series of random assaults that took place near the Big Four Bridge last weekend is getting national attention.
The O'Reilly Factor, Fox News' flagship primetime commentary show hosted by Bill O'Reilly, featured the story in its lineup Wednesday night.
O'Reilly's segment included the story done by WDRB's Courtney Godfrey, as well as commentary by attorney Thomas McAdam.
The attacks that erupted last Saturday night began at Waterfront Park before spreading through other parts of downtown.
About 200 young people were gathered at the Big Four Bridge when a group began attacking and robbing a 13-year-old girl, according to police. The group later assaulted a man who tried to intervene.
Louisville Metro Police have not yet responded to WDRB's request, under the Kentucky Open Records Act, for several years' worth of incident reports involving Waterfront Park and surrounding areas. Police Chief Steve Conrad told Metro Council members Wednesday that police are compiling recent data for crime at Waterfront Park.
Maj. Jeff Wardrip, commander of LMPD's first division, which includes downtown, did not return a phone call seeking comment. Police spokeswoman Alicia Smiley declined to make officers from the first division available for interviews.
Community activist Christopher 2X said teenagers from several parts of town gather often at the Waterfront on Saturdays when the weather is nice, setting up the gatherings through social media. Police are aware of the meet-ups, he said.
2X said there have been occasional skirmishes and runs by police to the area during these gatherings. He described the incidents as "petty arguments and fights" – but nothing like what happened over the weekend.
"Has it been to the extent people would feel it wasn't safe to go down there? I don't see any evidence of that," 2X said.
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